Using Algorithm in Diagnosing Children With Appendicitis Reduces Use of CT Scans

by Kathy Jones on  August 1, 2014 at 10:44 PM Child Health News
RSS Email Print This Page Comment
Researchers at Mayo Clinic Children's Center have found that using an algorithm in diagnosing pediatric patients with suspected appendicitis can reduce the number of computed tomography (CT) scans without affecting accuracy of the diagnosis, a new study published in the journal Surgery reveals.
 Using Algorithm in Diagnosing Children With Appendicitis Reduces Use of CT Scans
Using Algorithm in Diagnosing Children With Appendicitis Reduces Use of CT Scans

Acute appendicitis is the most common cause of acute abdominal pain in children. Appendicitis occurs when the appendix becomes inflamed and filled with pus. CT scans are often used to diagnose acute appendicitis because they are accurate, widely available and have the ability to provide clinicians with advanced information in appendicitis cases suspected of complications.

However, CT scans are expensive and expose patients to ionizing radiation. "This algorithm was developed by a multidisciplinary group of pediatric emergency room physicians, pediatric surgeons and radiologists to eliminate unnecessary exposure to radiation," explains Michael B. Ishitani, M.D., lead author of the study.

The study compared pediatric patients, under the age of 18, who underwent an appendectomy for acute appendicitis pre-algorithm implementation and post-implementation. Researchers studied 331 pediatric cases over the course of five years, and found that CT utilization decreased from 39 percent to 18 percent after the algorithm was in place.

Researchers found that when the algorithm was implemented, use of CT scans in patients dropped by over 50 percent, without affecting diagnostic accuracy, proving that reducing the use of CT scans when evaluating patients for appendicitis is safe and cost-effective.

"Implementation of this algorithm across multiple centers is the ideal outcome of this study, followed by further evaluations over time to ensure that the low rate of CT scan use continues," says Dr. Ishitani.



Source: Eurekalert

Post your Comments

Comments should be on the topic and should not be abusive. The editorial team reserves the right to review and moderate the comments posted on the site.
* Your comment can be maximum of 2500 characters
Notify me when reply is posted
I agree to the terms and conditions

More News on:

Appendicitis Appendectomy Height and Weight-Kids Abdominal Pain 

News A - Z

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

News Search

Medindia Newsletters

Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!

Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.


Stay Connected

  • Available on the Android Market
  • Available on the App Store

Facebook

News Category

News Archive