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The Impact of Diagnostic Imaging

For Boston Marathon bombing victims, radiologic imaging of blast injuries played a key role in emergency response

Often times people look at diagnostic imaging as unnecessary or going to far. Past an X-Ray people tend to look at the MRI or CT scan as a bit too much. Imaging does serve a major function and it does provide a service that aids people. Without imaging patients may never discover that they have tumors, complex conditions, and other issues, maybe not as severe. So what exactly is it about imaging that makes it special?

The fact is that diagnostic imaging played a crucial part in aiding the victims of the unfortunate bombing at the Boston Marathon. It was stated in an article published on that “In the Boston Marathon bombing, radiologic imaging of blast injuries played a key role in emergency response, with findings illustrating optimal timing and use of modalities and techniques.”  Emergency response in this situation is crucial. There were victims that lost limbs and inhaled enormous quantities of smoke.

The injuries also included negative effects in the vowels, in the ears, and in the lungs. A blast radius that encompasses a large area can create some seriously negative effects on the victims. The Boston Marathon tragedy was one that proved why diagnostic imaging serves such a major purpose.

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While a diagnostic imaging procedure may not be comfortable, or for that matter pleasant, it’s definitely necessary, especially in this type of situation. People affected by the bombing were getting horrible ringing in their ears, coughing up a little blood and so on. The article stated that “Prompt imaging was critical for assessing these injuries. Many patients underwent one or more operations, and rehabilitation from the injuries for many patients will be prolonged and difficult.”

While imaging was not the sole solution to this set of problems it was definitely a player with major impact in a tragic situation that changed many lives.

Bobby Serros




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