Neurologic trauma is one of the most common and challenging problems encountered in the pediatric emergency setting. Early and accurate diagnosis is essential to minimize morbidity and mortality. The primary goal of the neuroimager in the acute setting is to provide rapid diagnosis, to monitor the development of complications, and to aid in the determination of prognosis. Unique features of the immature brain and skull influence the patterns and types of injuries observed. It is incumbent on the radiologist to understand these features as an aid to diagnosis. Further, the radiologist must be aware of the pathophysiology and appearance of nonaccidental trauma to ensure recognition of this devastating problem. Lastly, the radiologic tools available, their appropriate use, and their limitations should be understood by the entire trauma team to provide cost-effective and timely care. This article summarizes the pathophysiology and current imaging of neurotrauma in the pediatric population, including trauma, nonaccidental trauma, accidental anoxic injury, and birth injury.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging