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MRI Trap:

A patient of mine recently developed diplopia, or double vision, from either a cranial nerve dysfunction or dysfunction of one of the eye muscles. He was seen by a hospital-employed neurologist, who recommended an MRI of the Brain and Orbit. The neurologist recommended the study be performed at his hospital.

Imaging site of service is extremely important to cost. Ideally, imaging should have been performed at an outpatient radiology facility.

The patient waited in the emergency room for a slot to open up on the MRI schedule. He was told that it is much quicker to get an MRI as an inpatient than an outpatient, so the patient was admitted.

Because of hospital imaging scheduling protocols, the patient was unnecessarily admitted.

After getting the MRI scan, the tech forgot to perform an MRI of the Orbit.

Lack of communication occurred. The patient was told he would have to be admitted for another evening.

The patient got frustrated and left the hospital and is getting another MRI of the orbit as an outpatient, elsewhere

Unfortunately, this scenario is repeated at many hospitals throughout the country. We in the medical community must do better.