Cardiac auscultatory skills of academic family physicians: strength of association with an academic pediatric cardiologist.

Research paper by Guzel G Discigil, Ayvaz A Aydogdu, Ayfer A Gemalmaz, F Serdar FS Gurel, Okay O Basak

Indexed on: 01 Jan '10Published on: 01 Jan '10Published in: International journal of family medicine


Aim. Heart murmur is common in children, and it is one of the main reasons for referral among children in primary care. The aim of this study is to evaluate agreement and consistency of normal, innocent, and pathologic murmur decision between academic family physicians and academic pediatric cardiologist. Methods. Seven hundred fifteen primary school children were examined by family physicians and paediatric cardiologist. Auscultatory examination was performed. Intensity, frequency, duration, quality, location, and radiation of the murmur were described if present. Agreement of normal, innocent, and pathologic murmur classification decision between family physician and paediatric cardiologist was analyzed by using kappa statistic. Results. Normal, innocent and pathologic murmurs were reported for 419, 228, and 54 children in family physicians' reports, respectively. Paediatric cardiologist agreed on 383 (91.4%) children as normal, 191 (83.7%) children having innocent murmur, and 19 (35.2%) children having pathologic murmur among family physician's reports. There was good consistency between family physicians and paediatric cardiologist (κ value = 0.679, 95% CI 0.630-0.727, P < .001). They agreed on the majority of normal and innocent murmur decisions. However family physicians reported pathologic murmur more frequently. Conclusion. Cardiac auscultatory skills of academic family physicians may be concordant with paediatric cardiologist.