Our specialists use specific tests and exams to answer your doctor's questions based on your child's size, health and other needs. The machines can be scary or loud for children, so our staff makes your child as comfortable as possible. They work only with children and are well-trained and experienced in comforting patients and distracting them during exams.
You will be referred to our pediatric radiologists by your primary care doctor, a Children's Hospital specialist or another hospital.
Sedation is sometimes required for tests that require children to stay perfectly still for a long amount of time. Because we only treat children, our sedation team knows how to tailor sedation plans for patients of all ages and sizes. Read more about pediatric sedation at Children's Hospital.
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a safe and painless test that uses a magnetic field and radio waves to produce detailed pictures of the body's organs and structures. An MRI does not use radiation.
Your child will lie down on a table that is slid into a large donut-shaped magnet. During the test, the tunnel picks up the positions of the atoms in the body and analyzes them. The result is a clear, cross-sectional image of the body. It can be converted into 3-D pictures of any particular body part. The pediatric radiologists will read the results and send their discoveries to your doctor.
MRIs can be used to detect problems with the brain, spine, skeleton, chest, lungs and joints. It is particularly helpful in diagnosing problems with the eyes, heart, ears and circulatory system.
The MRI machine sometimes makes loud knocking and buzzing noises. Help your child prepare by telling them what will happen and that you will be nearby during the test.
You may be referred to a pediatric radiologist by your child's pediatric gastroenterologist for a fluoroscopy. Your child will drink a white b liquid called barium. The radiologist will do an X-ray of the barium moving through the digestive system. A fluoroscopy can help find the cause of unexplained vomiting, nausea, stomach pain and indigestion. You will receive specific instructions before the fluoroscopy is performed. These guidelines depend on your child's age and will involve him not eating for a period of time before the test.
An ultrasound uses soundwaves instead of radiation to take images of the inside of the body. Ultrasounds may be ordered to find out more about bladder, stomach, kidney, head and pelvic problems. The procedure will take place in a dimly lit room with a large TV screen in it. The radiology staff member will put lotion on the spot to be imaged, then hold a camera to that spot. He will move it around and take pictures at each spot. The procedure is not painful.
Learn about the Pediatric Radiology specialists who are part of East Tennessee Children's Hospital: