IMV: CT procedures up 6% in 2010

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A U.S. survey of 421 CT sites in the U.S. indicated that 81.9 million CT procedures were performed in 8,180 hospitals and non-hospital sites in 2010, representing an average annual growth rate of about 6 percent since 2007, when about 68.7 million procedures were performed, according to an IMV report.

“This 6 percent annual growth rate for CT utilization demonstrates the key role that CT plays in diagnosing patient conditions,” said Lorna Young, senior director, market research. “While CT departments are focused on operational concerns such as preauthorization of procedures and addressing public concerns with radiation dose, CT is still considered to be an essential diagnostic tool.

Results from the survey, titled “2011 CT Market Outlook Report” also showed a decline in the use of contrast during CT procedures, down from a usage of 67 percent in 2007 to 55 percent in 2010.

For 77 percent of respondents surveyed, improving capability to reduce radiation dose to patients was a “very important” priority. However, those surveyed said they did not feel that dose issues are having much impact on the growth of CT procedures. Only 9 percent “totally agree” that “patient and public concerns over radiation dose will slow the growth of CT procedures” at their facilities, according to a press release from the research firm.

"It appears that CT departments are trying to reduce the frequency of using contrast media, as well as the contrast dose per patient," Young said. "Despite these operational pressures, CT scanners are still a workhorse modality for radiology departments."

Among some of the highlights of the report, IMV noted the following:

  • CT angiography procedures are performed by nearly three-quarters of CT sites.
  • Forty-six percent of the CTs installed in 2010 were systems with 64 or more slices.
  • Of those planning to purchase CT scanners from 2011 through 2013, more than 25 percent are planning to purchase CTs with greater than 64 slices.
  • Based on respondent estimates, the average replacement cycle for a CT scanner is 8.3 years.
  • The CT OEM is the primary source of services support for 71 percent of the installed CTs, followed by third-party service organizations (14 percent), in-house service (10 percent) and “other CT manufacturers” (2 percent).

More information about the report can be found here.