It is standard procedure in Danish hospitals to employ general anesthesia when small children (< 8-10 years) are in need of medical imaging procedures, such as an MRI. The anesthesia reduces motion artefacts and is useful when dealing with anxious children. Although complications directly related to general anesthesia are rare, there is an increasing concern about the potential neurotoxic effects of general anesthesia. Additionally, there are logistic and financial challenges associated with the use of general anesthesia. In the MoCo project we want to test the clinical efficacy a new approach of imaging children, including preparation and training and introducing a novel marker-less motion tracking device “Tracoline” that can register children’s movements while scanning.
The Tracoline device allows for motion correction of the acquired images and we wish to demonstrate its efficacy in children with Cerebral Palsy (CP) that undergo MRI scans for diagnostic purposes. Before moving to imaging children, we first establish the functionality of Tracoline and prospective motion correction in a population of 20 healthy controls. This will be finished in spring 2021. Next we will move on to prepare and image children referred for clinical magnetic resonance imaging. Note, while we have chosen to focus the clinical trial on children with CP, the test results will be transferable to other populations.
20 healthy controls and 50 children with CP are expected to participate in the MoCo project.