It is also possible that the differences observed in the principal study end point (length of hospitalization) might have achieved greater statistical significance in a larger population.
Given the wide variability in hospital stay among dyspneic patients, to prove at a significance level of p<.05 that echocardiography was responsible for shortening this stay by the observed mean of 2.3 days (with a 90 percent likelihood of detecting such a difference), would require testing of well over 900 patients. Thus, while some benefit from echo cannot be entirely excluded by this study, it can be concluded that the overall impact of echo in the patients tested was small. buy levaquin online
Finally, a shortening of hospitalization, a change in diagnosis, or alteration in further workup or treatment plans may not be exclusive measures of what clinical benefits can accrue from echocardiography. However, a survey of these parameters can indicate how such testing affects the diagnostic and treatment process. By such albeit imperfect standards, indiscriminate echocardiography appears to be of limited value. In an era of concern over the rising costs of health care, such results argue for a more thoughtful and judicious approach to patient testing.