E2690. Protocol Like a Pro: Tips and Tricks for Protocoling Body Imaging Studies
  1. Preya Shah; Stanford Health
  2. Luyao Shen; Stanford Health
  3. Lindsey Negrete; Stanford Health
Protocoling an imaging study refers to determining the parameters of the exam in terms of contrast amount/timing, patient positioning, field of view, and other related factors. Radiologists need to know the proper way to protocol studies, as it is crucial to minimizing chances of a nondiagnostic study and need for additional imaging.

Educational Goals / Teaching Points
The purpose of this presentation is to provide a simple toolbox for protocoling body imaging studies. First, we will discuss the main phases of IV contrast (early arterial, late arterial, portal venous, nephrographic, and delayed phases) in terms of timing, image characteristics, and clinical utility. Next, we will delve deeper into tips for protocoling studies to answer common clinical questions. Finally, we will provide key points for specific clinical scenarios, such as when to give oral and rectal contrast, how to account for low GFR, and when noncontrast images are needed. Additional case studies will be shown to help radiologists troubleshoot protocols in less common clinical scenarios.

Key Anatomic/Physiologic Issues and Imaging Findings/Techniques
We will discuss how protocol techniques can highlight specific pathologies in different organs, including liver, kidney, adrenal glands, and bowel. For this presentation we will focus on CT studies and common MRI studies of the abdomen and pelvis.

Protocoling studies effectively is incredibly important for patient care. Choosing the right study parameters can maximize the chance that an imaging study will provide useful data and answer the clinical question at hand.