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  Imaging is now Easier for the Area's Vulnerable Children
June 9, 2009

Children’s National Medical Center is the First in the Region with a Portable CT Scanner

For Immediate Release: June 9, 2009

WASHINGTON – Imaging of critically ill children can now be done with minimal disruption and risk at Children’s National Medical Center.  Sara and Mark Reges and Karen and Tom Morgan, of Potomac, Maryland, partnered with Children’s National to make imaging safer in the pediatric intensive care unit and to make real-timing imaging possible during surgery. The new CT scanner, called a CereTom®, is one of only a handful in use in pediatric hospitals around the country, and is one of only a handful in use in any hospital the mid-Atlantic region.

The families dedicated the first portable computerized tomography (CT) scanner in the Washington, DC area on Friday, June 5. Both families have sons who were treated for traumatic brain injuries (TBI) at Children’s National. Both children have now have recovered fully.

“One of the most frightening things while our child was in the hospital was moving him in and out of his room and down two floors for a CT scan,” said Sara Reges. “I am a nurse myself and saw the need to make it possible to do high-quality imaging with minimal movement of the patient.”

The portable CT scanner delivers high resolution images that are effective and efficient in diagnosing head and neck injuries. Those scans can be taken right at the patient’s bedside without requiring the child to be moved. “This improves the quality of care tremendously in the intensive care setting,” said Heidi J. Dalton, MD, Medical Director, Pediatric Intensive Care Unit. The intensive care teams and imaging teams collaborate in diagnosing right at the bedside with engagement of parents who also can help keep the patient calm and still. This truly is an example of patient/family-centered care that has excellent clinical outcomes.”

The scanner also has applications in neurosurgery where it is essential to know “real-time” if a procedure has been successful before the surgery is concluded.

“The portability of this scanner vastly improves our ability to offer timely diagnosis of intracranial disease processes outside the imaging suite,” said Robert F. Keating, Chief, Department of Neurosurgery. It makes high-quality, real-time imaging possible in the intraoperative setting. This tool changes the practice of neurosurgery as we currently know it.”

Contact Stacy Williams or Paula Darte, Public Relations, 202-476-4500.
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Children's National Medical Center, located in Washington, DC, is a proven leader in the development of innovative new treatments for childhood illness and injury. Children’s has been serving the nation's children for more than 135 years. Children’s National is proudly ranked among the best pediatric hospitals in America by US News & World Report and the Leapfrog Group. For more information, visit www.childrensnational.org.