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To Ct Or Not To Ct: A Level2 Pediatric Trauma Centerís Aim To Reduce Ionizing Radiation In Pediatrics And Adolescents
*Aaron Isaiah Worthley, Heather Rhodes, Nasser Mohammad, Stephanie Howerton, Jennifer Morse, Alison Burns, Laura Strickland, Antonio Pepe, Robert Horton, Summer Rabon, Christina Catlla
Grand Strand Medical Center, Myrtle Beach, SC

Title: To CT or not to CT: A Level II Pediatric Trauma Centerís Aim to Reduce Ionizing Radiation in Pediatrics and Adolescents
ABSTRACT: Purpose. Childhood exposure to radiation through CT imaging is related with increased cancer and other maladies in late life. There is opportunity to educate facilities that transfer pediatric patients to pediatric trauma centers. At the trauma center, additional imaging may be necessary, increasing the exposure to radiation. The trauma center must provide education that would decrease risk of future harm to pediatrics. This study intended to quantify the effect of outreach to referring facilities to reduce CT imaging. Methods. This was a retrospective study of pediatric (≤ 15 years) trauma patients transferred into a state verified Level II pediatric trauma center in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, inclusive years July 1, 2016 to July 1, 2020. The data was grouped based upon pre-intervention (July 1, 2016 to July 1, 2017) and post-intervention (July 2, 2017 to July 1, 2020). Comparisons were made based on demographics, ISS, trauma activation, and CT utilization. The statistical test used included the Pearsonís chi-square test of proportions, and the Wilcoxon-Kruskal-Wallis test in SPSS software, as appropriate. Results. There was significant reduction in all (P=0.002), head (P=0.005), c-spine (P=0.002), and abdomen (P=0.034) /pelvis (P=0.023) CTs within the study timeframe. Conclusions: The education and outreach intervention was successful at reducing CT utilization among pediatric (≤ 15 years) trauma patients transferred from a referring facility. Future research should aim at replicating this study as a multi-center project with a larger study population.


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