This advanced technology, combined with expertise acquired through collaborations with Mass General adult gastroenterologists, allows practitioners to perform endoscopic ultrasounds, endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP), in-unit motility studies and therapeutic endoscopic procedures that can diagnose or treat young patients without surgery. Procedures can be broadcast nationally and internationally via video conferencing, facilitating shared expertise and increased communication among different medical centers involved in caring for children with specialized endoscopic needs. A second procedure room is used for more traditional endoscopic procedures.
New pediatric endoscopy suite at MassGeneral Hospital for Children.
New Technology Advances Care, Understanding and Education
Availability of new technologies and close collaboration with adult gastroenterologists with in-depth endoscopy expertise has made possible an advanced pediatric endoscopy training program for one of our senior pediatric gastroenterology fellows at MGHfC. This program is focused on training in emerging technologies and therapies for use in children, including endoscopic ultrasound with fine needle aspiration, endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ECRP), choledocoscopy, confocal endomicroscopy, endoscopic mucosal resection, radiofrequency ablation and cryo-ablation. With the additional skills in the use of these technologies, we will be better able to contribute to the development of new endoscopic procedures that specifically address the needs of the pediatric population.
Care Model Focuses on Patient and Family Comfort
Waiting room and front desk of the new suite.
The physical space and care model used within the new pediatric endoscopy suite were designed with input from parents, child life specialists, nurses and physicians to ensure the best possible experience for patients and families. All services, from reception through pre- and post-operative care, are provided in a dedicated pediatric space that contains games, books and toys, including an iPad. Both pediatric nurses with specialized training in pediatric endoscopy and a dedicated child life specialist work with patients to reduce anxiety.
Once children are admitted, they and their family members move to the pre/post area, comprising six large bays around the nurses’ station. These bays are equipped with TVs, DVDs, iPads, games and Wiis. Nurses have a direct line of sight into each patient bay, but patients cannot look into other bays. All pre-procedure preparation is done in the bay. The unit is equipped to meet the needs of children with developmental delays, including individualized support from the child life specialist and nurses and a specially equipped bay in which sound and lighting can be subdued to help reduce stimulation. Once the procedure is complete, patients return to one of the bays where their family can stay with them until discharge. Patients also remain on the unit throughout colonic motility studies, only leaving the bay to which they were admitted to have the catheter placed in the procedure room. All necessary medications and food challenges are administered while the child watches DVDs, reads or visits with family members. The child life specialist is available throughout the child’s stay if additional support is needed.