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    Recommendations on patient-facing websites regarding diagnostic imaging for low back, knee, and shoulder pain : a scoping review

    Cuff, Andrew, Jesson, Thomas, Yeowell, Gillian ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-3872-9799, Dikomitis, Lisa, Foster, Nadine E and Littlewood, Chris (2022) Recommendations on patient-facing websites regarding diagnostic imaging for low back, knee, and shoulder pain : a scoping review. PEC Innovation, 1. p. 100040. ISSN 2772-6282

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    Abstract

    Objective To describe and synthesise the content of public-facing websites regarding the use of diagnostic imaging for adults with lower back pain, knee, and shoulder pain. Methods Scoping review conducted in accordance with PRISMA guidance. A Google search was performed to identify public-facing websites that were either United Kingdom-based, or National Health Service affiliated. The DISCERN tool was used to appraise website quality before information regarding the use of imaging was synthesised using thematic analysis. Results Eighty-six websites were included, with 48 making reference to the use of imaging. The information within the majority (n = 43) of public-facing websites aligns with best available evidence. Where there is inconsistency, this may be explained by lower website quality. Three themes were apparent regarding the use of imaging – imaging to inform diagnosis and management; imaging in context; patient experience and expectations. Conclusion The recommendations and rationale for use of imaging contained within public-facing websites does not appear to justify the increase in imaging rates for musculoskeletal pain in the UK. Innovation Publicly available information following a novel search strategy, is largely aligned with best evidence, further understanding is required to determine reasons for requesting imaging from a patient and clinician perspective.

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