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American Association for Hand Surgery

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Assessing Patient Satisfaction When Diagnosing Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: Nerve Conduction Studies versus Ultrasound
Jeffrey C Wera, MD1, Sabrina Carrozzi, BS2, Colin H Beckwitt, MD, PhD1, William Schulz, BS3, Karen Wasil, RN1 and John Fowler, MD4, (1)University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, PA, (2)University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, PA, (3)University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, (4)Orthopaedic Surgery and Sports Medicine, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, PA

Hypothesis: The Net Promoter Score (NPS) is employed across service industries to gauge consumer loyalty and assesses how likely a consumer is to recommend a product or service. 'Promoters' would definitely recommend the service again, 'passives' are satisfied but would not actively recommend the service, and 'detractors' would actively discourage others from seeking the service. We hypothesize that when being evaluated for carpal tunnel syndrome, patients are more likely to recommend ultrasound as a diagnostic test compared to electrodiagnostic studies.

Methods: Following IRB approval, 50 patients presenting to the clinic for evaluation for carpal tunnel syndrome complaints were prospectively studied. Patients presenting with carpal tunnel complaints and electrodiagnostic studies (EDX) were included in this study. An ultrasound (US) evaluation of the median nerve was then completed at time of evaluation. Patient satisfaction was determined by asking, "How likely are you to recommend this procedure to a friend or relative?" for both EDX and US after both tools were completed. Patient demographics, comorbidities, Carpal Tunnel 6 Questionnaire (CTS), and functionality assessed through patient reported Quick Disability of Arm, Shoulder and Hand (qDASH) were also recorded.

RESULTS: There was no statistical difference in age, sex, or medical comorbidities in the subgroup analysis of those patients who were "promoters," "passives," or "detractors." Patients were "promoters" with regards to US and "neutral" for EDX studies. The NPS score for was 94 for US and 60 for EDX.

-Patients are more likely to recommend US instead of EDX in the evaluation of CTS complaints
-US is convenient, painless, and saves time when assessing patients with CTS complaints

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