How useful is gastroesophageal reflux scintigraphy in suspected childhood aspiration?

H. D. Fawcett, C. K. Hayden, J. C. Adams, L. E. Swischuk

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


It has been suggested that gastroesophageal reflux scintigraphy (GRS) might be useful in assisting one in determining therapy for patients suspected of aspirating or becoming apneic second-ary to gastroesophageal reflux. This, however, has not been our experience and in reviewing 23 patients with recurrent pneumonia and/or apnea who had GRS, we were able to detect aspiration in only one. This was especially significant since 13 (59%) of these patients had demonstrable reflux, and of these, eight were treated successfully for suspected aspiration even though none was demonstrated isotopically. To be sure, the demonstration of pulmonary aspiration with GRS had little influence on patient selection and response to therapy. For this reason we feel there is little justification in depending on the GRS for the specific purpose of trying to document pulmonary aspiration in infants and children who are refluxing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)311-313
Number of pages3
JournalPediatric radiology
Issue number4
StatePublished - May 1988

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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