Unremarkable VS Normal in a Radiology Report

The term “unremarkable” is a shortcut for the description of an imaging study or imaging finding.    The term “normal” is a complete evaluation.

When a radiologist describes an imaging study as “unremarkable”  or a finding in an imaging study as “unremarkable” the radiologist is saying that the study or finding is either “normal” or has abnormalities that are of no significance to the patient in that situation.  The radiologist may not take the time to describe any insignificant abnormalities because the radiologist considers them unimportant but is assuming that further evaluation of the imaging study could yield addition insignificant abnormalities not already described.

If a radiologist concludes that an imaging study or imaging finding is “normal” the radiologist is saying that all findings have been fully evaluated and are “normal” and that further evaluation of the imaging study will not detect any abnormalities, significant or insignificant.