Children with rare bone diseases often endure repeated radiology scans, each adding to what could become a large amount of radiation entering their bodies. Thanks to a significant donation from the Butler Family Foundation, Shriners Hospitals for Children research funding, and other gifts from generous patrons, Shriners Hospitals for Children — St. Louis has purchased an XtremeCT II bone density scanner. When compared to a traditional CT (computed tomography) scanner, the XtremeCT II uses one thousand times less radiation, which serves as a great benefit for the health of patients who are scanned often.
Because the XtremeCT II is a fairly new device, it will be primarily utilized by the Shriners Hospitals for Children — St. Louis Center for Metabolic Bone Disease and Molecular Research (Research Center). The device has been approved for use in Europe and is currently being reviewed by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for use in the United states. Therefore, it can only be used for certain research purposes at this time. This scanner is the only XTremeCT II in the Central States Region (the next closest is at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota) and only the fourth in the country to be utilized for pediatric research.
Michael Whyte, M.D., director of the Research Center at Shriners Hospitals for Children — St. Louis, says, “The Research Center is thrilled to now have an XtremeCT instrument in its clinic area. It will advance our understanding of the many metabolic (chemical) and dysplastic (malformation) disorders of the skeleton.”
The XtremeCT II, with a cost of more than $475,000, is manufactured in Zurich, Switzerland. Dr. Whyte explains the scanner’s potential, saying, “This state-of-the-art instrument will provide a quantum leap forward in imaging the skeleton because we can now go beyond routine assessment of bone density of certain bones to now look more deeply to see and to measure components within individual bones. We have been propelled to the cutting edge of this aspect of skeletal investigation for at least the next decade and beyond.”
Recently, local CBS affiliate KMOV covered the acquisition of the XtremeCT II scanner. Watch the video.