Comparative study to determine technical failures affecting conventional chest radiography

OBJECTIVE: To specify and quantify main technical failures, whether mechanical or electronic, encountered at conventional chest radiography, in order to improve imaging quality, thus reducing the necessity of additional images acquisition and, consequently, the radiation dose received by the patients. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A pulmonologist selected and reviewed 897 conventional chest radiographic films in either posteroanterior or lateral views, performed in five health institutions in the city of São Paulo. The films were individually analyzed in the search of technical failures, and classified according predefined technical radiographic errors which had led to re-examination. RESULTS: The obtained results have demonstrated that incorrect patient positioning (27%), underexposure (23%) and overexposure (15%) were the main failures contributing to repetition of examinations, with a Pearson correlation coefficient > 0.7%, thus leading to an increase in the dose received by the patients. CONCLUSION: The results of the present study indicate the need for X-ray apparatuses quality control, improvement of operators' skills, as well as further studies to clarify the impact resulting from examinations repetition.

Radiography; Chest; Lung; Technical failures; Biostatistics

Publicação do Colégio Brasileiro de Radiologia e Diagnóstico por Imagem Av. Paulista, 37 - 7º andar - conjunto 71, 01311-902 - São Paulo - SP, Tel.: +55 11 3372-4541, Fax: 3285-1690, Fax: +55 11 3285-1690 - São Paulo - SP - Brazil