RSNA awards Margulis prize to COVID-19 paper

2019 12 01 17 59 7967 Rsna 2019 Sign 400

The RSNA has awarded its Alexander R. Margulis Award for Scientific Excellence to a radiologist in China who was one of the first to use CT to investigate a mysterious lung condition that later came to be known as COVID-19. The award recognizes the best original scientific paper of the year published in Radiology.

The award was given to Dr. Liming Xia, PhD, chief physician and chairman of the department of radiology at Tongji Hospital of Tongji Medical College in Wuhan, China. Xia's paper was published in Radiology in February 2020, and it described how chest CT outperformed lab testing for diagnosing COVID-19.

The paper covered the correlation between CT and reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) testing in over 1,000 cases in China. The paper provided key information to radiologists around the world in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic on how CT could be used, said Radiology Editor Dr. David A. Bluemke, PhD.

At the time the study was performed, slowdowns in RT-PCR testing were leading to turnaround times of over a week for lab results. Xia and colleagues launched a study to determine whether CT could be used in the screening of suspected COVID-19 patients, finding that it had a sensitivity of 97% compared with RT-PCR testing.

The paper by Xia and colleagues has been downloaded more than 400,000 times and has been cited more than 770 times since publication, according to RSNA.

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