According to a new study, following certain guidelines while performing CT scans on children staying at hospitals and suffering from head injuries can provide several advantages. The advantages include reduced radiation exposure risks, sooner release of the children from hospitals, promoting patient and family satisfaction in addition to decreasing costs. The study took place at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center. The findings of the study are discussed at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Richard Falcone, MD, MHP, director of Trauma Services at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, noted that the CT scans guidelines were designed in order to cope with the raising concerns regarding the unnecessary use of CT scans, in addition to the delay in releasing children from hospitals which results in family frustration. Dr. Falcone explained "Our institution, as well as almost all other institutions, likely over-image children during initial evaluations and subsequent care. There is an increased risk of cancer with imaging and therefore, less imaging is better."
Children and CT.
Dr. Falcone and his researching team conducted a study involving 712 patients in a period of 4 years. These patients were sent to the hospital while suffering from mild traumatic brain injuries. The age of them ranged between birth time and 16 years, and they were checked in the emergency room. The CT scans guidelines were followed by physicians and nurses in addition to neurosurgeons. The involved patients were divided into high, normal, or low risk after conducting CT scans. The researching team found that when the guidelines were applied, a decreased number of CT scans were carried out, in addition to significant reduction in costs for each patient (nearly $8,000). Dr. Falcone commented "Implementation of relatively simple guidelines helps guide and standardize the plan of care in children diagnosed with mild traumatic brain injury. Future and more widespread implementation of such guidelines can continue to improve overall care for injured children."