Many new and exciting diagnostic modalities are being introduced into radiology, and some of them are beginning to have an impact on pediatric practice. Most of these modalities are noninvasive techniques which can be performed with ease and safety in the pediatric patient. For example, the application of axial tomography with computer integration of the radiologic image (EMI Scanner, ACTA Scanner) may revolutionize the practice of neuroradiology as we now know it. Nuclear medicine is only beginning to blossom in its many physiologic and morphologic applications, particularly with the introduction of Gamma Cameras and short half-lived scanning agents associated with minimal radiation dose. The use of ultrasonography is becoming particularly important in the evaluation of acquired and congenital heart disease and in the evaluation of abdominal masses. Thermography and xeroradiography have yet to find a significant use in pediatric practice. Fine tuning and modification of diagnostic radiologic procedures used routinely in adult medicine have made the application of such modalities as angiography relatively safe in skilled hands when they are used for children.
These newer diagnostic modalities must be subjected to the same critical analyses regarding efficacy, cost, and safety that currently are demanded and accepted for the introduction of new drugs and other forms of therapy. They will have to be evaluated to establish whether or not they are simply duplications of more conventional methods of diagnosis and fail to improve patient care. Publication of their availability and use, and even advertisements, should be considered carefully before they are accepted for application in pediatrics.
- Copyright © 1974 by the American Academy of Pediatrics