Skip to main content


Log in

Designing a Consumer-Friendly Radiology Report using a Patient-Centered Approach

  • Original Paper
  • Published:
Journal of Digital Imaging Aims and scope Submit manuscript


Patient portals have helped accelerate patient engagement in treatment. Patient understanding of radiology reports has become a necessity, and we are working to design a patient-friendly radiology report that can be easily understood. We have based the design of this new radiology report on the results of a previous study that examined patient desires and needs by exploring their questions posted on online discussion forums. The current design was tested by presenting it in two groups, a control group, and an intervention group. In our evaluation, we relied on the following five concepts: understanding (quiz), cosmetics appearance, perceived ease of use, acceptance, and preference. The results showed that the new design outperformed the current design in all five concepts with an overall of (P < .00). Based on these results, we have determined that the radiology report should include both an image and notes section, and the design can be applied to all types of radiological examinations using various imaging devices. We believe this design will be an important building block in facilitating patient understanding of radiology reports.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in via an institution to check access.

Access this article

Subscribe and save

Springer+ Basic
EUR 32.99 /Month
  • Get 10 units per month
  • Download Article/Chapter or Ebook
  • 1 Unit = 1 Article or 1 Chapter
  • Cancel anytime
Subscribe now

Buy Now

Price excludes VAT (USA)
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.

Instant access to the full article PDF.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Fig. 4
Fig. 5
Fig. 6
Fig. 7
Fig. 8
Fig. 9
Fig. 10

Similar content being viewed by others


  1. Rocha DM, Brasil LM, Lamas JM, Luz GV, Bacelar SS: Evidence of the benefits, advantages and potentialities of the structured radiological report: An integrative review. Artif Intell Med 102:101770, 2020

    Article  Google Scholar 

  2. Alarifi M, Patrick T, Jabour A, Wu M, Luo J: Full Radiology Report through Patient Web Portal: A Literature Review. Int J Env Res Pub He 17:3673, 2020

  3. Lee CI, Langlotz CP, Elmore JG: Implications of direct patient online access to radiology reports through patient web portals. JACR 13:1608-1614, 2016

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  4. Johnson AJ, Frankel RM, Williams LS, Glover S, Easterling D: Patient access to radiology reports: what do physicians think? JACR 7:281-289, 2010

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  5. Olthof AW, de Groot JC, Zorgdrager AN, van Ooijen PMA: Perception of radiology reporting efficacy by neurologists in general and university hospitals. Clin Radiol 73:675. e1–675. e7, 2018

  6. Yi PH, Golden SK, Harringa JB, Kliewer MA: Readability of lumbar spine MRI reports: will patients understand? AJR 212:602-606, 2019

    Article  Google Scholar 

  7. Martin-Carreras T, Kahn Jr CE: Coverage and readability of information resources to help patients understand radiology reports. JACR 15:1681-1686, 2018

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  8. Gutzeit A, Heiland R, Sudarski S, Froehlich JM, Hergan K, Meissnitzer M, Kos S, Bertke P, Kolokythas O, Koh DM: Direct communication between radiologists and patients following imaging examinations. Should radiologists rethink their patient care? Eur Radiol. 29:224–231, 2019

  9. Alarifi M, Patrick T, Jabour A, Wu M, Luo J: Understanding patient needs and gaps in radiology reports through online discussion forum analysis. Insights Into Imaging (forthcoming)

  10. Netter FH: Atlas of human anatomy, 7th edition, Plate 162. 2014: Elsevier Health Sciences.

  11. Cleveland WS, McGill R: Graphical perception: Theory, experimentation, and application to the development of graphical methods. J Am Stat Assoc 79:531-554, 1984

    Article  Google Scholar 

  12. Hegarty M: The cognitive science of visual‐spatial displays: Implications for design. Top Cogn Sci 3:446-474, 2011

    Article  Google Scholar 

  13. Khasnabish S, Burns Z, Couch M, Mullin M, Newmark R, Dykes PC: Best practices for data visualization: creating and evaluating a report for an evidence-based fall prevention program. J Am Med Inform Assn 27:308-314, 2020

    Article  Google Scholar 

  14. Ratwani RM, Trafton JG, Boehm-Davis DA: Thinking graphically: Connecting vision and cognition during graph comprehension. J Exp Psychol 14:36, 2008

    Google Scholar 

  15. Davis CR, McNair AG, Brigic A, Clarke MG, Brookes ST, Thomas MG, Blazeby JM: Optimising methods for communicating survival data to patients undergoing cancer surgery. Eur J Cancer 46:3192-3199, 2010

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  16. Alverson CY, Yamamoto SH: Educational decision making with visual data and graphical interpretation: assessing the effects of user preference and accuracy. Sage Open 6:2158244016678290, 2016

    Article  Google Scholar 

  17. O'Brien S, Lauer C: Testing the susceptibility of users to deceptive data visualizations when paired with explanatory text. in Proceedings of the 36th ACM International Conference on the Design of Communication, 2018.

  18. Gichoya JW, Alarifi M, Bhaduri R, Tahir B, Purkayastha S: Using cognitive fit theory to evaluate patient understanding of medical images. in 2017 39th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBC). IEEE, 2017

  19. Oladiran O, Gichoya J, Purkayastha S: Conversion of JPG Image into DICOM Image Format with One Click Tagging. in International Conference on Digital Human Modeling and Applications in Health, Safety, Ergonomics and Risk Management. Springer, 2017

  20. He Z: Understanding and Bridging the Language and Terminology Gap Between Health Professionals and Consumers Using Social Media, in Social Web and Health Research. Springer 103–121, 2019

  21. Vitzthum von Eckstaedt H, Kitts AB, Swanson C, Hanley M, Krishnaraj A: Patient-centered radiology reporting for lung cancer screening. J Thora Imag. 35:85-90, 2020

    Article  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding authors

Correspondence to Mohammad Alarifi or Jake Luo.

Ethics declarations

Ethics Approval

This is an observational study. The University of Wisconsin—Milwaukee Institutional Research Ethics Committee has confirmed that no ethical approval is required.

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare no competing interests.

Additional information

Publisher's Note

Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

About this article

Check for updates. Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Alarifi, M., Patrick, T., Jabour, A. et al. Designing a Consumer-Friendly Radiology Report using a Patient-Centered Approach. J Digit Imaging 34, 705–716 (2021).

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Revised:

  • Accepted:

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: