Precepting genital exams: challenges in implementing a complex educational intervention in the continuity clinic.
ABSTRACT The female genital exam is often omitted from the routine physical. This limits familiarity with normal findings and represents a missed opportunity to evaluate girls for urogenital abnormalities. Continuity clinic offers an opportunity to develop and test a teaching intervention to address this problem.
To describe the effect of precepted genital exams on resident confidence and comfort with the exam as well as knowledge and documentation of genital anatomy.
A controlled trial was conducted in 10 continuity clinics at Children's Hospital, Columbus, Ohio. Residents in 5 clinics reviewed genital anatomy, exam positions, and documentation examples. They were asked to complete 6 precepted exams of girls aged 1-6 years during well-child care over a 6-month period. Residents were given pre- and posttests assessing knowledge of, confidence, and comfort with the genital exam. Pre- and poststudy genital exam documentation was reviewed.
Ninety-seven percent of the intervention group, compared to 73% of the control group, answered 4 or 5 on a 5-point scale of confidence with regard to recognizing a normal exam (5 = highest) following the intervention (P = .01). Ninety-four percent of the intervention group and 64% of the control group answered 4 or 5 with regard to how comfortable they were performing genital exams (P = .01). Knowledge scores and documentation of genital anatomy did not differ between groups. Thirty-two percent of residents had the full intervention.
Resident confidence and comfort increase with precepting. Precepting did not improve knowledge or documentation of genital anatomy. We advocate use of this preliminary data to design and test future educational interventions.
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ABSTRACT: To describe factors that prompt pediatric practitioners to suspect child sexual abuse, the barriers to inquiry, and the approach to management of cases of possible abuse. Qualitative, descriptive, and case-based. Six focus group interviews were conducted. Maternal and Child Health Bureau-sponsored collaborative office rounds groups nationwide participated in discussions of five vignettes. Each group interview lasted 1.5 hours and had 7 to 16 participants (n = 65). Audiotaped data were transcribed and analyzed independently for themes by two reviewers. Five themes emerged from the group interviews: anticipatory guidance, red flags, approach to management, terminology used in discussions, and barriers to inquiry. All groups discussed giving anticipatory guidance about sexual abuse. Half (3/6) believed girls were more likely to be victimized, and some (2/6) gave more anticipatory guidance to girls for this reason. Although some groups reported giving anticipatory guidance about sexual abuse, many reported inconsistencies in their practice. All groups identified historical, behavioral, and physical red flags for sexual abuse but believed that they were not trained in residency to recognize these signs. There was no consensus regarding the approach to management of cases of possible sexual abuse, and many participants did not know the types of questions that they should be asking children when they suspect abuse. Members of all groups reported using imprecise terms when they discuss sexual issues with families. Most (4/6) believed that it was a practitioner's responsibility to inquire about abuse but believed that their discomfort with sexual topics was a barrier to inquiry. All believed that the most significant barrier to inquiry was inadequate training in the area of sexual abuse and that cases are missed because of lack of training. Highly motivated pediatric practitioners reported that they give anticipatory guidance about sexual abuse inconsistently, that they were not trained to recognize red flags for sexual abuse, and that they do not have a consistent approach to cases of suspected abuse. Additionally, they reported that they are not comfortable discussing sexual issues and that they miss cases of sexual abuse primarily because of lack of training. Educational interventions that target these themes are essential to improve the ability of pediatricians to screen children and to intervene when sexual abuse is identified.Pediatrics 09/1999; 104(2 Pt 1):270-5. · 5.12 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Our goal was to identify vulvar and hymenal characteristics associated with sexual abuse among female children between the ages of 3 and 8 years. Using a case-control study design, we examined and photographed the external genitalia of 192 prepubertal children with a history of penetration and 200 children who denied prior abuse. Bivariate analyses were conducted by chi(2), the Fisher exact test, and the Student t test to assess differences in vulvar and hymenal features between groups. Vaginal discharge was observed more frequently in abused children (P =.01). No difference was noted in the percentage of abused versus nonabused children with labial agglutination, increased vascularity, linea vestibularis, friability, a perineal depression, or a hymenal bump, tag, longitudinal intravaginal ridge, external ridge, band, or superficial notch. Furthermore, the mean number of each of these features per child did not differ between groups. A hymenal transection, perforation, or deep notch was observed in 4 children, all of whom were abused. The genital examination of the abused child rarely differs from that of the nonabused child. Thus legal experts should focus on the child's history as the primary evidence of abuse.American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology 05/2000; 182(4):820-31; discussion 831-4. · 3.88 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: To determine if written feedback improves the chart documentation and knowledge of physicians doing evaluations for child sexual abuse and to learn what other factors are associated with better documentation and knowledge. Randomized, controlled trial. A statewide network of physicians performing child abuse evaluations. All physicians who performed evaluations for sexual abuse during 1991 to 1992. One hundred forty-seven physicians were randomized to control (n = 75) and intervention (n = 72) groups, 122 (83%) remained at follow-up, and 87 of the 122 (71%) had done evaluations for child sexual abuse. Tailored written feedback based on chart reviews and relevant articles were sent to a randomly selected one-half of the physicians during a 3-month period. The quality of documentation and physician knowledge before and after the intervention. Documentation by chart review of up to five randomly chosen records per physician (preintervention, n = 552; postintervention, n = 259) by reviewers blinded to intervention status and physician knowledge was assessed by survey (78% completion). Change in documentation and knowledge for physicians in the intervention group was not statistically significant compared with the control group. The risk ratio for a mean overall history rating of excellent/good was 0.89 (0.63, 1.25) and for a mean overall physical examination rating of excellent/good was 1.03 (0.73, 1.45). Both groups improved significantly during the time period. The largest improvements in the time period were in documenting the history of where abuse occurred, in the physical examination position, hymenal description, penile findings, and knowing that chlamydia infection should be assessed by culture. A structured medical record, female physicians, and credits in continuing medical education were associated with better documentation. Tailored feedback to the physician with directed educational materials did not seem to improve most aspects of documentation and knowledge of child sexual abuse, although notable improvement was seen during the time period studied. This study suggests that chart audits may not be the best use of resources for trying to improve physician behavior; credits in continuing medical education and use of structured records may be more likely to be beneficial.PEDIATRICS 06/1998; 101(5):817-24. · 4.47 Impact Factor