When it comes to imaging children, being small is a really big deal for the pediatric radiologists at Wake Radiology. We understand the key role that high-quality imaging and image-guided treatment play in the health and age-appropriate care of infants, children, adolescents, and young adults.
From a common chest X-ray to complex studies, our mission is to provide each child with the level of care and personal attention we would want for our own family. Our goal is to reduce anxiety and help patients and their families feel reassured while collaborating with their clinicians to find the answers they need. Our approach is hands-on because we know – hands down – that this is what it takes to truly deliver excellence in imaging children.
The need for pediatric radiologists
At Wake Radiology, all our pediatric radiologists are 100% devoted to imaging children. They are exceptionally trained, having attained a certificate of added qualification (CAQ) in pediatric radiology in addition to being board certified by the American Board of Radiologists (ABR) and fellowship trained in pediatric radiology. Having also worked at busy tertiary hospitals, Wake Radiology physicians have the level of clinical experience that can only be gained at high-volume centers. They have also published and presented at numerous national meetings due to their involvement in important pediatric radiology research.
We know children are not little adults
While some diseases seen in children are the same as in adults, many conditions are seen only in certain pediatric age groups. The dynamics are different in a growing body, from pre-term infants to large adolescents. Our pediatric radiologists have greater experience with these normal variants and developmental anatomy than general radiologists do. This training allows them to more confidently and correctly identify normal findings that prevent unnecessary follow-up imaging or intervention. Their expertise in pathology that is unique to children leads to more accurate diagnosis and classification. They also understand the benefits of each modality that is unique to children, including the obvious and not-so-obvious benefits of ultrasound for those under 18.
We take pediatric radiation exposure seriously
Children are two to ten times more sensitive to radiation than adults and will have longer lifetimes of medical exposure. Our pediatric radiologists are committed to low-dose imaging to clarify clinical questions with the least amount of exposure possible. They employ the safest imaging techniques and protocols, including reducing the amount of radiation used and scanning only the area that needs to be diagnosed or treated. Whenever a clinical answer can be obtained with ultrasound (no radiation) instead of CT (which uses ionizing radiation), we will discuss this alternative with the ordering clinician and perform an ultrasound first. Learn more about Wake Radiology’s low dose commitment.
Ultrasound works particularly well in children because they have less soft tissue than adults (which makes it easier for the sound waves to penetrate), they can move around without compromising the image, and the ultrasound probe can be targeted directly to the site of pain or the palpable finding, increasing sensitivity. The result is pediatric-specific medical imaging that allows accurate diagnosis and protects children from excess radiation exposure.
In an increasing number of cases, MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) is the right choice for imaging a young patient, and the modality uses no ionizing radiation. MRI is particularly useful as an alternative to CT in following chronic conditions for which the frequency of imaging would otherwise quickly lead to a large cumulative radiation dose. Learn more about Wake Radiology’s low dose commitment.
The importance of collaboration
Wake Radiology’s breadth and depth of imaging expertise enable the level of internal collaboration needed to deliver the most accurate interpretation in even the most challenging or time-sensitive situations. Since our pediatric radiologists are part of a much larger group of subspecialists, they can take a team approach for complex neurologic, orthopedic or interventional/vascular issues. For example, if a teenager has had a concussion, our neuroradiologists will also interpret the CT or MRI images to help Wake Radiology develop the most accurate and conclusive interpretation/report. In other cases, our pediatric radiologists will consult with our body experts on MRE procedures performed for possible Crohn’s disease.
Wake Radiology pediatric outpatient locations
Wake Radiology Pediatric Imaging Center at 4301 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 100 Raleigh, NC 27607
The Wake Radiology outpatient Imaging Center in West Raleigh is the first – and only – pediatric imaging hub in the Triangle. The Wake Radiology pediatric radiologists and technologists are skilled in handling children. They are experts at getting children to hold still using age-appropriate distraction and coping techniques. This allows us to get high-quality studies done quickly, which reduces the amount of stress on both the child and caregivers and decreases the number of repeat exams. Our radiologists get directly involved in almost every case at our West Raleigh office, and this hands-on approach allows us to tailor exams for every patient, thereby increasing diagnostic accuracy. Our outpatient Pediatric Imaging Center offers all radiology modalities except MRI (which is performed at our Raleigh MRI Center) and serves as the hub for all pediatric imaging we provide at our other Triangle locations. It’s also a convenient option for families needing follow-up appointments after hospitalization. The office is located in the medical neighborhood surrounding UNC REX Healthcare, and a pediatric radiologist is on-site Monday-Friday from 8am-5pm.
Inpatient imaging continuity at UNC REX Hospital
Our pediatric radiologists not only interpret imaging studies taken at all Wake Radiology outpatient locations, but they are also on staff at UNC REX healthcare. This approach delivers an important level of imaging continuity that improves the care provided by the area’s pediatric community and its increasing number of pediatric subspecialists.