Acute knee injuries: Use of decision rules for selective radiograph ordering

Howard B. Tandeter, Pesach Shvartzman, Max A. Stevens

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Family physicians often encounter patients with acute knee trauma. Radiographs of injured knees are commonly ordered, even though fractures are found in only 6 percent of such patients and emergency department physicians can usually discriminate clinically between fracture and nonfracture. Decision rules have been developed to reduce the unnecessary use of radiologic studies in patients with acute knee injury. The Ottawa knee rules and the Pittsburgh decision rules are the latest guidelines for the selective use of radiographs in knee trauma. Application of these rules may lead to a more efficient evaluation of knee injuries and a reduction in health costs without an increase in adverse outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2599-2608
Number of pages10
JournalAmerican Family Physician
Issue number9
StatePublished - 1 Dec 1999


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