Dr. Vikram Sabhaney using a point-of-care ultrasound system on a young patient at BC Children’s Hospital. (BC Children’s Hospital photo)

BC Children’s raising money to help better diagnose kids

Funds will support new ultrasound system that works at a child’s bedside

The BC Children’s Hospital Foundation is hosting an event next week to help raise money to support an ultrasound system that can be taken right to a child’s bedside.

The children who come in are often in serious condition with multiple, worrying symptoms, said emergency room physician Dr. Vikram Sabhaney. The ‘point of care’ ultrasound system allows doctors to diagnose better and faster.

“One of our goals is really to better understand what their constellation of symptoms mean,” said Sabhaney. “We can’t always wait to make these critical diagnoses, sometimes they have to be made in a matter of minutes.”

As the only level one pediatric trauma centre in the province, it’s also important for BC Children’s to not have to move often seriously injured kids into a standard ultrasound machine.

“Sometimes these patients are so incredibly sick that we can’t even get them to a CT scanner,” said Sabhaney.

Many of the kids that the hospital treats are too young to understand what’s going on, he added, making it all the more critical to make the experience as pain-free as possible.

“We have complicated patients who come in who’ve had many IVs in the past, and who are very difficult to start them in,” he said. “So instead of having to go through numerous pokes to try and get an IV, we can use an ultrasound to help reduce the number of attempts we need.”

Organizers hope to raise $350,000 at the Night of Miracles fundraising gala on Oct. 28 at the Vancouver Marriot Pinnacle Hotel. The gala has raised more than $3.7 million for the hospital since it began in 2009.

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