Pediatric Radiology

, Volume 48, Issue 1, pp 66–73 | Cite as

Identification of quality improvement areas in pediatric MRI from analysis of patient safety reports

  • Camilo Jaimes
  • Diana J. Murcia
  • Karen Miguel
  • Cathryn DeFuria
  • Pallavi Sagar
  • Michael S. Gee
Original Article



Analysis of safety reports has been utilized to guide practice improvement efforts in adult magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Data specific to pediatric MRI could help target areas of improvement in this population.


To estimate the incidence of safety reports in pediatric MRI and to determine associated risk factors.

Materials and methods

In a retrospective HIPAA-compliant, institutional review board-approved study, a single-institution Radiology Information System was queried to identify MRI studies performed in pediatric patients (0–18 years old) from 1/1/2010 to 12/31/2015. The safety report database was queried for events matching the same demographic and dates. Data on patient age, gender, location (inpatient, outpatient, emergency room [ER]), and the use of sedation/general anesthesia were recorded. Safety reports were grouped into categories based on the cause and their severity. Descriptive statistics were used to summarize continuous variables. Chi-square analyses were performed for univariate determination of statistical significance of variables associated with safety report rates. A multivariate logistic regression was used to control for possible confounding effects.


A total of 16,749 pediatric MRI studies and 88 safety reports were analyzed, yielding a rate of 0.52%. There were significant differences in the rate of safety reports between patients younger than 6 years (0.89%) and those older (0.41%) (P<0.01), sedated (0.8%) and awake children (0.45%) (P<0.01), and inpatients (1.1%) and outpatients (0.4%) (P<0.01). The use of sedation/general anesthesia is an independent risk factor for a safety report (P=0.02). The most common causes for safety reports were service coordination (34%), drug reactions (19%), and diagnostic test and ordering errors (11%).


The overall rate of safety reports in pediatric MRI is 0.52%. Interventions should focus on vulnerable populations, such as younger patients, those requiring sedation, and those in need of acute medical attention.


Children Magnetic resonance imaging Quality improvement Safety Safety report 


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflicts of interest



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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of Neuroradiology, Department of RadiologyMassachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical SchoolBostonUSA
  2. 2.Division of Abdominal Imaging, Department of RadiologyMassachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical SchoolBostonUSA
  3. 3.Quality and Safety Office, Department of RadiologyMassachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical SchoolBostonUSA
  4. 4.Division of Pediatric Imaging, Department of RadiologyMassachusetts General Hospital for Children, Harvard Medical SchoolBostonUSA

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