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[en] For the past several years, increased levels of imaging radiation and cumulative radiation to children has been a significant concern. Although several measures have been taken to reduce radiation dose during computed tomography (CT) scan, the newer dose reduction software adaptive statistical iterative reconstruction (ASIR) has been an effective technique in reducing radiation dose. To our knowledge, no studies are published that assess the effect of ASIR on extremity CT scans in children. To compare radiation dose, image noise, and subjective image quality in pediatric lower extremity CT scans acquired with and without ASIR. The study group consisted of 53 patients imaged on a CT scanner equipped with ASIR software. The control group consisted of 37 patients whose CT images were acquired without ASIR. Image noise, Computed Tomography Dose Index (CTDI) and dose length product (DLP) were measured. Two pediatric radiologists rated the studies in subjective categories: image sharpness, noise, diagnostic acceptability, and artifacts. The CTDI (p value = 0.0184) and DLP (p value <0.0002) were significantly decreased with the use of ASIR compared with non-ASIR studies. However, the subjective ratings for sharpness (p < 0.0001) and diagnostic acceptability of the ASIR images (p < 0.0128) were decreased compared with standard, non-ASIR CT studies. Adaptive statistical iterative reconstruction reduces radiation dose for lower extremity CTs in children, but at the expense of diagnostic imaging quality. Further studies are warranted to determine the specific utility of ASIR for pediatric musculoskeletal CT imaging. (orig.)
[en] Head computed tomography (CT) is the current standard of care for evaluating infants at high risk of abusive head trauma. To both assess the feasibility of using a previously developed magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) brain injury screen (MRBRscreen) in the acute care setting in place of head CT to identify intracranial hemorrhage in high-risk infants and to compare the accuracy of a rapid imaging pulse sequence (single-shot T2 fast spin echo [ssT2FSE]) to a conventional pulse sequence (conventional T2 fast spin echo [conT2FSE]). This was a quality improvement initiative to evaluate infants <12 months of age who were screened for intracranial hemorrhage using an MRBRscreen as part of clinical care. The MRBRscreen included axial conT2FSE, axial gradient recalled echo, coronal T1-weighted inversion recovery, axial diffusion-weighted image and an axial ssT2FSE. A comparison of ssT2FSE to conT2FSE with respect to lesion detection was also performed. Of 158 subjects, the MRBRscreen was able to be completed in 155 (98%); 9% (14/155) were abnormal. Ninety-four percent (137/145) of subjects underwent only an MRBRscreen and avoided both radiation from head CT and sedation from MRI. The axial ssT2FSE and conT2FSE results were congruent 99% of the time. An MRBRscreen in place of a head CT is feasible and potentially could decrease head CT use by more than 90% in this population. Using a rapid ssT2FSE in place of a conT2FSE can reduce total scan time without losing lesion detection. If an MRBRscreen is readily available, physicians’ threshold to perform neuroimaging may be lowered and lead to earlier detection of abusive head trauma.
[en] The benefits of multiplanar reconstructed images (MPR) of unenhanced axial head computed tomography (CT) data have not been established in trauma patients younger than 3 years old, a population in which a reliable history and physical examination may be most difficult. We retrospectively evaluated unenhanced head CTs in pediatric trauma patients to investigate the various benefits of MPR in this age group. A total of 221 unenhanced head CTs performed for any case of head trauma (HT) on children younger than 3 years old were independently reviewed by two radiologists. Studies were reviewed first in the standard axial plane alone and then with the addition of MPR. Reviewers were asked to determine if the MPR affected the ability to make findings of hemorrhage, incidental findings, and artifacts. MPR improved the detection of hemorrhage in 14 cases (6.5 %, p-value < 0.01) and incidental findings in five cases (2.3 %, p-value < 0.05) as well as helped prove artifacts in five cases (2.3 %, p-value < 0.05). Routine use of MPR in HT patients younger than 3 years old has the potential to increase the detection of acute and incidental imaging findings. (orig.)
[en] Magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) offers a unique, noninvasive approach to assess pediatric neurological abnormalities at microscopic levels by quantifying cellular metabolites. The most widely available MRS method, proton (1H; hydrogen) spectroscopy, is FDA approved for general use and can be ordered by clinicians for pediatric neuroimaging studies if indicated. There are a multitude of both acquisition and post-processing methods that can be used in the implementation of MR spectroscopy. MRS in pediatric neuroimaging is challenging to interpret because of dramatic normal developmental changes that occur in metabolites, particularly in the first year of life. Still, MRS has been proven to provide additional clinically relevant information for several pediatric neurological disease processes such as brain tumors, infectious processes, white matter disorders, and neonatal injury. MRS can also be used as a powerful quantitative research tool. In this article, specific research applications using MRS will be demonstrated in relation to neonatal brain injury and pediatric brain tumor imaging. (orig.)
[en] We describe association of olfactory bulb and olfactory tract abnormalities in a child with acrocallosal syndrome caused by kinesin family membrane 7 (KIF7) mutation in sonic hedgehog pathway. The child also had fontanellar bone in the anterior fontanelle, short sagittal suture, sagittal synostosis, hippocampal malrotation and Joubert malformation. Fontanellar bone has been described in GLI3 mutation and mutant mice models but has not been reported in KIF7 mutation. We briefly review the role of sonic hedgehog pathway and its components KIF7 and GLI3 in forebrain and olfactory system development and also describe olfactory system abnormality in a child with GLI3 mutation.
[en] The use of the adaptive statistical iterative reconstruction (ASIR) algorithm has been shown to reduce radiation doses in adults undergoing abdominal CT studies while preserving image quality. To our knowledge, no studies have been done to validate the use of ASIR in children. To retrospectively evaluate differences in radiation dose and image quality in pediatric CT abdominal studies utilizing 40% ASIR compared with filtered-back projection (FBP). Eleven patients (mean age 8.5 years, range 2-17 years) had separate 40% ASIR and FBP enhanced abdominal CT studies on different days between July 2009 and October 2010. The ASIR studies utilized a 38% mA reduction in addition to our pediatric protocol mAs. Study volume CT dose indexes (CTDIvol) and dose-length products (DLP) were recorded. A consistent representative image was obtained from each study. The images were independently evaluated by two radiologists in a blinded manner for diagnostic utility, image sharpness and image noise. The average CTDIvol and DLP for the 40% ASIR studies were 4.25 mGy and 185.04 mGy-cm, compared with 6.75 mGy and 275.79 mGy-cm for the FBP studies, representing 37% and 33% reductions in both, respectively. The radiologists' assessments of subjective image quality did not demonstrate any significant differences between the ASIR and FBP images. In our experience, the use of 40% ASIR with a 38% decrease in mA lowers the radiation dose for children undergoing enhanced abdominal examinations by an average of 33%, while maintaining diagnostically acceptable images. (orig.)
[en] Among all causes of death in children from solid tumors, pediatric brain tumors are the most common. This article includes an overview of a subset of infratentorial and supratentorial tumors with a focus on tumor imaging features and molecular advances and treatments of these tumors. Key to understanding the imaging features of brain tumors is a firm grasp of other disease processes that can mimic tumor on imaging. We also review imaging features of a common subset of tumor mimics. (orig.)
[en] To study the relationships between midbrain morphology, Loes score, gross motor function, and cognitive function in infantile Krabbe disease. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans were evaluated by two neuroradiologists blinded to clinical status and neurodevelopmental function of children with early or late infantile Krabbe disease. A simplified qualitative 3-point scoring system based on midbrain morphology on midsagittal MRI was used. A score of 0 represented normal convex morphology of the midbrain, a score of 1 represented flattening of the midbrain, and a score of 3 represented concave morphology of the midbrain (hummingbird sign). Spearman correlations were estimated between this simplified MRI scoring system and the Loes score, gross motor score, and cognitive score. Forty-two MRIs of 27 subjects were reviewed. Analysis of the 42 scans showed normal midbrain morphology in 3 (7.1 %) scans, midbrain flattening in 11 (26.2 %) scans, and concave midbrain morphology (hummingbird sign) in 28 (66.7 %) scans. Midbrain morphology scores were positively correlated with the Loes score (r = 0.81, p < 0.001) and negatively correlated with both gross motor and cognitive scores (r = -.84, p < 0.001; r = -0.87, p < 0.001, respectively). The inter-rater reliability for the midbrain morphology scale was κ =.95 (95 % CI: 0.86-1.0), and the inter-rater reliability for the Loes scale was κ =.58 (95 % CI: 0.42-0.73). Midbrain morphology scores of midsagittal MRI images correlates with cognition and gross motor function in children with Krabbe disease. This MRI scoring system represents a simple but reliable method to assess disease progression in patients with infantile Krabbe disease. (orig.)
[en] Evaluation of Krabbe disease burden and eligibility for hematopoietic stem cell transplantation are often based on neuroimaging findings using the modified Loes scoring system, which encompasses central but not peripheral nervous system changes. We show that quantitative evaluation of thickened cauda equina nerve roots may improve the evaluation of Krabbe disease and therapeutic guidance. Lumbar spine MRI scans of patients obtained between March 2013 and September 2013 were retrospectively evaluated and compared to those of controls. Quantitative evaluation of cauda equina roots was performed on the axial plane obtained approximately 5 mm below the conus medullaris. The largest nerves in the right and left anterior quadrants of the spinal canal were acquired. Fifteen symptomatic patients with Krabbe disease (5-44 months old) and eleven age-matched controls were evaluated. The average areas (mm"2) of anterior right and left nerves were 1.40 and 1.23, respectively, for patients and 0.61 and 0.60 for controls (differences: 0.79 and 0.63; p < 0.001). Cauda equina nerve root thickening is associated with Krabbe disease in both treated and untreated patients. Adding lumbar spine MRI to the current neurodiagnostic protocols, which fails to account for peripheral nerve abnormalities, will likely facilitate the diagnosis of Krabbe disease. (orig.)