Your child's imaging exam: Offering choices from start to finishComing to the hospital for an imaging exam can be a scary experience for a child. It can also be overwhelming for parents and family members who may not know what to expect. Our imaging team does everything possible to make the journey through our department a positive experience.

You and your child are partners in this journey, so your input is crucial to a successful experience. Our imaging team honors your family’s preferences and choices. This begins at the time of scheduling and continues until the test is complete.

Scheduling and location options

You’re able to choose the appointment date and time that works best for your personal scheduling needs. We try to work around school, day care, family and work obligations. Early morning, evening and some weekend appointments are available. Our imaging services are offered at multiple locations, including our main campus in Milwaukee and clinics in New Berlin and West Allis.

While a particular need such as sedation might guide the time frame, we are confident that we can find a time that works for you and your child. Most appointments can be scheduled by simply calling (414) 607-5280.

Honoring the preferences of you and your child

After your child’s appointment is scheduled and if sedation may be needed, an imaging nurse will review your child’s history to make sure that everything is in place for the exam ordered. Our nurses will call with instructions and answer your questions. They will work with you to honor any preferences you or your child may have. This may be as simple as wearing her own clothes or bringing a favorite blanket or toy, to the more complex coordination of multiple exams with the same sedation.

Our imaging nurses are available from 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday at (414) 266-8663 to help make sure that we have addressed you and your child’s needs.

The choices continue

When you and your child arrive in our Imaging Program, the choices continue. For some exams, your child can choose a movie to watch or to play their own music from an iPod docking station. If your child needs to drink contrast, they will be able to choose what flavor to mix it with. Your child may be able to choose whether they sit up or lie down for an x-ray. In some areas, your child may be able to pick the room color or change the color of the lights that illuminate the room. One of our MRI scanners even has a light that can change color to meet the patient’s preference.

Of course, not everything can be a child’s choice. If they need an IV for a contrast injection, they won’t be able opt out. Your child can help choose the type of comfort measure that helps make the IV start easier. We offer the J-tip, a device that injects a small dose of numbing medicine with a puff of air or Pain Ease (the “freezy” spray).

After the exam is complete, your child will have the toughest choice of all. They will need to decide what prize or sticker to choose for doing a great job!

Linda Flannery RN, BSN– Linda Flannery, RN, BSN, diagnostic nurse manager, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin

Staff in the Imaging Program at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin use the newest, most advanced technology to provide the highest-quality diagnosis and treatment options for children. The department’s expertise, top-notch technology and commitment to teaching and research have contributed to dramatic advances in diagnostic imaging.


Your child’s imaging exam: Offering choices from start to finish — 2 Comments

  1. *Are there child life services available? My child did so well with them at another hospital… PLEASE advocate and provide for MORE child life staff if you do not have them. They were able to get my child through diversionally without having to sedate or give medicine.

  2. Yes, we have an incredible Child Life Specialist available to our department every day. A parent can request Child Life services by calling our Imaging Resource Nurses at 414-266-8663. One of the nurses will coordinate with the Child Life Specialist. And, we have the ability to page our Child Life team for “just–in time” consults as well. Thanks! – Linda Flannery, RN, BSN