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NCT ID: NCT04237454 Completed - Fracture Clinical Trials

Thermal Imaging Compared to Skeletal Survey in Children Below 2 Years

Start date: September 1, 2016
Phase: N/A
Study type: Interventional

When a child less than 2 years old attends the Emergency Department (ED) with an injury, carers should offer an explanation. When there is no explanation or if the explanation is inconsistent & because the child cannot say what happened, the doctor will need to consider all possible causes including child abuse. To help exclude abuse, the doctor will request x-rays of all the child's bones to make sure there are no other unexplained fractures. This requires up to 20 x-rays, which are called a skeletal survey. Even if there are no fractures, some or all of the x-rays will be repeated in the following 7-21 days, because by that time any fractures will have started to heal and so are easier to see than on the first skeletal survey. It means that if a doctor is worried about abuse, the child may need to have up to 40 x-rays, which amounts to a significant radiation dose (more than 6 months of natural UK background radiation) & increases the child's lifetime risk of getting cancer. 79 to 97 out of 100 skeletal surveys performed are normal. While it is of paramount importance to identify if a child is being abused, it is also important to minimise radiation dose. A camera which detects light and heat given off by the body has shown promise in some areas of medical practice. We plan to compare the results from the camera to those of the skeletal survey in 40 children below 2 years of age attending our hospital over a 6-month period. We hope to demonstrate that this technology can be used to further select children who should have a skeletal survey, reducing radiation dose in children without missing those who are being abused and sending them home to be abused again.