Contrast-Enhanced Ultrasonography Is Accurate

February 29, 2008

In the diagnosis of solid organ injuries in children, contrast-enhanced ultrasonography is almost as accurate as contrast-enhanced computed tomography and may confer less risk, researchers report in the March issue of Radiology.

FRIDAY, Feb. 29 (HealthDay News) -- In the diagnosis of solid organ injuries in children, contrast-enhanced ultrasonography is almost as accurate as contrast-enhanced computed tomography and may confer less risk, researchers report in the March issue of Radiology.

Massimo Valentino, M.D., of University Hospital in Bologna, Italy, and colleagues compared the accuracy of ultrasonography, contrast-enhanced ultrasonography and contrast-enhanced computed tomography in a study of 27 children -- including 19 boys and eight girls -- with blunt abdominal trauma.

Compared to ultrasonography, the researchers found that the diagnostic performance of contrast-enhanced ultrasonography was significantly better. With sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative predictive values of 92.2 percent, 100 percent, 100 percent and 93.8 percent, respectively, they found that contrast-enhanced ultrasonography was in good agreement with contrast- enhanced computed tomography findings.

"Our data suggest that contrast-enhanced ultrasonography can be considered for the triage of hemodynamically stable children with abdominal trauma," the authors conclude. "Moreover, the technique may represent a useful alternative to computed tomography in the follow-up of hospitalized children with a known abdominal injury who are cared for non-surgically and thus prevent the need to move the patient to the computed tomography suite and spare the child from radiation exposure. Further prospective series are required to confirm our findings."

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