What is an Age of Injury ("AOI") Report?
“An Age of Injury report is a non-biased expert opinion from a Board Certified Radiologist detailing whether specific findings on a diagnostic such as an MRI or CT are related or unrelated to the date of an accident.”
What kind of conclusions may our clients expect from an Age of Injury ("AOI") report?
“Our specially trained radiologists will give an opinion based on the findings evident on a diagnostic such as an MRI or CT generally in one of three categories:
a) Not related to date of injury (DOI) b) Indeterminate c) Related to date of injury (DOI)"
What percentage will be in the indeterminate category?
Initial experience is less than 10 percent.
Can we provide additional help in the indeterminate category?
Yes, we can further subdivide into:
a) Indeterminate, but probably unrelated to date of injury (DOI) b) Indeterminate, but probably related to date of injury (DOI)
So that when completed less than 5 percent of our initial reports will be completely indeterminate.
Can anything else be done in the indeterminate category?
Yes, we can provide a sequential AOI report which will look at multiple studies over a post injury time frame. Frequently, claimants have one or more prior MRI studies before a DOI or have an undisclosed MRI immediately after a DOI. Many times follow-up MRI studies may be helpful. We will provide guidance on what we believe would be most helpful in determining a relationship of any particular finding with an injury.
Will this be helpful?
Definitely, we believe insurers want to pay justified claims without delay and to deny unjustified claims without delay. Our AOI report is prompt, reasonable and reliable, and reproducible.
Is our method supported by scientific data?
Yes, our radiologists are all well trained in radiology in general and AOI analysis, specifically. An MRI study is an objective piece of information that will be available unchanged forever. In broad terms, radiologists are familiar with the signs of acute injury and also the signs of chronic changes on imaging exams. Among all radiologists, there will be only a small intraobserver and interobserver variability. Our radiologists are specifically trained so that we can reduce that small variability even further.
What if we disagree with the finding from the primary reporting radiologist?
We understand that while radiologists reading "compensation" MRI exams are in general professional, that at times findings may be overstated or understated. For example, a disc bulge may be formally reported by some radiologists as frank herniation. We will supply more formalized and widely acceptable terminology. We divide disc abnormalities into several categories including diffuse bulge, broad-based protrusion, focal protrusion, extrusion and sequestration. We believe the term 'herniation' is less scientific and should be avoided.
Are we willing to become involved in legal proceedings?
Yes, we have experience and success in that area. Our goal is to assist our client in obtaining a fair and accurate resolution to a case through the evaluation of objective information via an MRI or other film. To that end, we are prepared to fully, truthfully and confidently state our professional opinion, whether in an AOI report, formal or informal deposition, or in the courtroom.
Will you work with IME physicians?
Yes, we believe a comprehensive solution is best. We are a fee based organization and will work in all avenues to ensure appropriate case management can occur.
Is the report a medical record of the injured party?
The report is not a medical record of the injured party. It is an evaluative tool to be used by our clients to assist in the evaluation of a claim. The AOI report is an opinion of a board certified radiologist, given initially as a non testifying expert consultation. No doctor/patient relationship is created by or through our AOI report or other consultation.
Do you perform comparison studies?
Our board certified radiologists perform comparison studies to obtain a more complete picture of the status of the injury as compared to the date of the accident.
How do you charge for different MRI studies of the same individual?
An AOI report is charged for each individual body part you would like us to review for causation.
How is an AOI report non-biased?
The AOI report is non-biased because of our double blind process. Our radiologists are shielded from the party ordering the AOI report. The only information our radiologists have when they give their opinion is the actual diagnostic such as an MRI and the first read radiology report. They have no knowledge of who is actually ordering the report, whether for the Plaintiff/Claimant or the Defendant. This double blind process protects the integrity of the opinion giving it more weight and value.
Can DDS assist with obtaining the MRI or other diagnostic scan?
For a nominal charge, DDS can assist the client with collecting the cd or film of the MRI or other diagnostic scan.
How long does it take to get an AOI report after DDS receives the diagnostic scan (MRI, CT, etc.)?
DDS guarantees 10 business day turn around once it has the first read report and CD or film in its’ possession.
What if I need the AOI as a rush?
For an additional fee, DDS can produce an AOI within 24 hours of receiving the CD or film and the first read report.
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