Joanna Fairhurst: Paediatric imaging covers all imaging modalities – plain films, ultrasound, fluoroscopy, computed tomography (CT), nuclear medicine, magnetic resonance (MRI) – undertaken in children ranging from new-born infants to those who are sixteen, or in some centres eighteen, years old. Imaging patients in this age range poses some very specific challenges. First, coming to the hospital can be a very frightening experience for young children, and we need to adapt our techniques to help children feel as secure and comfortable as possible, and we often employ distraction and play therapy to reduce their anxiety and help them cooperate with their examinations. We also try to create a child-friendly environment, by decorating our department and providing toys, but the best way to make our young patients feel at ease is to have radiographers and radiologists who are experienced in, and enjoy working with children.
Dr Joanna Fairhurst