Original Article

Competency of Residents and Interns in Pneumothorax Diagnosis on Chest Radiography: an Observer Performance Study


  • Ebru Ozan
  • Gokce Kaan Atac
  • Yucel Akkas
  • Togay Evrin
  • Bulent Kocer

Received Date: 20.07.2017 Accepted Date: 10.08.2017 Eurasian J Emerg Med 2018;17(1):9-13


This study aimed to investigate the competency of residents and interns in diagnosing pneumothorax on chest radiography (CXR) as well as to identify potential areas requiring training on this subject.

Materials and Methods:

A case set including a total of 40 chest radiographies that were in the digital imaging and communications in medicine (DICOM) format were loaded to the DICOM-compatible software tool-Viewer for Digital Evaluation of X-ray images (ViewDEX). Fifty-three observers, including 25 residents and 28 interns, interpreted the images by answering all the questions determined for each case.


The overall accuracy rate to diagnose pneumothorax on CXR was 79% in the study cohort, with 79.5% and 78.6% for residents and interns, respectively. No significant difference was observed between residents and interns when compared in terms of accuracy rates (regardless of the residents’ specialties; p=0.600). When the residents’ specialties were considered, the diagnostic accuracy rate was found to be significantly different between the groups (p<0.05).


The results of our study in terms of the overall accuracy rates of residents and interns in pneumothorax diagnosis on CXR are comparable to the previous studies in literature. However, comparison to another national study was not feasible due to the lack of published studies on this topic in Turkey. We believe that our study may serve as a starting point by raising the awareness on the subject and promote further studies in our country.

Keywords: Pneumothorax, chest radiography, diagnosis, competency, residents, interns