Managing Incidental Findings

Valeria Makeeva, MD; Kirsten Schofield, MS; Melissa Davis, MBA, MD; Nadja Kadom, MD


Appl Radiol. 2021;50(6):22-26. 

In This Article

Closing the Loop on Result Communication

An important concept in managing AIF is "closing the loop." This consists of conveying the specified information to a recipient, the recipient acknowledging receipt of the information and requesting clarification if necessary and, finally, the original sender confirming that the information received is well understood.[6] Closed loop communications, including the names of the sender and recipient, are documented in the radiology report or patient chart and include the names of both the reporter and recipient of the information, date, time, and means of communication.[7]

Closed-loop communication with respect to AIFs may be accomplished verbally or through electronic communication technologies that can automatically confirm that the results were read by the recipient. Such technology can reduce the notification time of abnormal results, increase the rates of lab and pathology follow-up, and improve communication of these results.[8]