Tag: MRI

  • Vaccines and parents’ selective worries about medical risks

    I’ve been involved in several boisterous Twitter debates about vaccines, at least to the extent that one can debate using snippets of 140 characters or less. I’ve also been a Super Moderator at a very large Internet message board (AbsoluteWrite) for many years and have seen my share of passionate vaccine debates there. I’ve been…

  • Medical testing and the risks of idle curiosity

    Doctors use a lot of tests — blood tests, urine tests, x-rays, MRI scans, and quite a few others. Some of these tests carry well-known risks in doing them. For example, a few people have serious allergic reactions to the contrast dye used in certain x-ray tests. For most of the other tests, though, the…

  • Children need sedation for painful or scary procedures

    When I started training in pediatrics nearly 35 years ago it was common practice when an infant or child needed something done that was going to be painful, anxiety-producing, or both, the child was often merely held (or tied) down. Looking back on it now, it reminds me of the 19th century, a time when…

  • Concussions in children

    Football season is upon us again, so it’s time to think about sports injuries. We frequently have children admitted to the PICU (or to what we call the intermediate or step-down unit) for observation, typically overnight, who have struck their head. They have had concussions. What is a concussion, and what does it mean for…

  • Why we doctors order far too many scans

    There’s a provocative editorial in a recent New England Journal of Medicine about the explosive rise in high-tech medical imaging. Everyone knows doctors order a lot of CT scans, MRI scans, and ultrasound studies, and that the number of these has been steadily increasing. And the cost is enormous. From the article: ” . .…

  • Sedation for children who need procedures — yes, of course

    When I started training in pediatrics, nearly 35 years ago, it was common practice when an infant or child needed something done that was going to be painful, anxiety-producing, or both, the child was often merely held (or tied) down. Looking back on it now, it reminds me of the 19th century, a time when…

  • Traumatic brain injury in children

    Most children with significant brain injury spend time in a PICU. Like most experienced pediatric intensivists, I have seen hundreds of these children over the years, with dozens at least in the severe category. In one sense the term “traumatic brain injury” has limited usefulness because it covers such a wide range of injuries, from…

  • Medical tests and the risks of curiosity

    Doctors use a lot of tests, such as blood tests, x-rays, MRI scans, and quite a few others. Some of these tests carry well-known risks in doing them. For example, some people have serious allergic reactions to the contrast dye used in x-ray tests. When doctors order these tests on children we are making a…