Pediatric Patients and COVID-19: Diagnosis, Management, Treatment, Roles of Chest X-Ray, CT, & Lung Ultrasound

George Tsoukatos, BPS, RT(R)*

*Medical Imaging Consultant, Germantown, NY

Address correspondence to: George Tsoukatos, BPS, RT(R)Radiology Support ServicesPO Box 215, Germantown, NY, 12526. E-mail: radiologytechnique@gmail.com.

Disclosure Statement: The author reports having no significant financial or advisory relationships with corporate organizations related to this activity.

Dedication: This course is dedicated to the countless healthcare professionals working around the clock to both care for and continue to develop effective vaccines for COVID-19. Their sacrifice to save and treat others is eternal.

ABSTRACT

Major disease epidemics are typically associated with overcrowded living conditions, inadequate food storage, food-borne illnesses, and food safety issues. However, early disease spread did not spread very far due to the inability to travel across continents. Over time, epidemics became pandemics, and disease development and transmission transitioned from local spread to international exposure, as rail and ship travel made long-distance travel possible. Since early 2020, this scenario has been playing out as a newly discovered virus, COVID-19 and its variants, became an international pandemic after the original virus was first discovered in December 2019.

From the first diagnosed patient up to the present day, the way clinicians and healthcare providers of all types diagnose, treat, and manage patients with COVID-19 has evolved. The importance that radiological imaging plays has been key to effectively treating patients of all ages and with varying comorbidities, particularly pediatric patients. As a result, it is critical that all radiology healthcare professionals are well educated and well versed in performing the necessary imaging studies that help diagnose and treat pediatric patients with COVID-19 and its associated conditions. This includes their role as consultants in advising clinicians on the appropriate use of chest radiography, computed tomography (CT), and lung sonography (LUS) as diagnostic tools. It is also important for radiologic technologists (RTs) to produce the highest quality diagnostic studies for the subtle findings of COVID-19 to be interpreted by the radiologist. This course will provide up-to-date information about the development of COVID-19 since its discovery, disease spread, vaccine types and approvals for pediatric patients, and infection control procedures and protocols. It will also address the possible complications of COVID-19 diagnosis, related conditions and disease courses, and how chest X-rays, CT, and LUS best assist healthcare professionals in the most effective treatment and management of infants, children, and adolescents.

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