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Diagnostic imaging plays a significant role in the management of many patients with toxicologic emergencies. Radiography can confirm a diagnosis (eg, by visualizing the xenobiotic), assist in therapeutic interventions such as monitoring gastrointestinal (GI) decontamination, and detect complications of the xenobiotic exposure (Table 8–1).219

TABLE 8–1Xenobiotics with Diagnostic Imaging Findings

Conventional radiography is readily available in the emergency department (ED) and is the imaging modality most frequently used in acute patient management. Other imaging modalities are used in certain toxicologic emergencies, including computed tomography (CT); enteric and intravascular contrast studies; ultrasonography; transesophageal echocardiography (TEE); magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and magnetic resonance angiography (MRA); and nuclear scintigraphy, including positron emission tomography (PET) and single-photon emission tomography (SPECT).



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