Objective: To compare the high resolution CT (HRCT) scores of the Bhalla system with pulmonary function tests and radiographic and clinical points of the Shwachman-Kulczycki clinical scoring system.
Methods: HRCT of the chest was obtained in 40 children to assess the role of HRCT in evaluating bronchopulmonary pathology in children with cystic fibrosis (CF). The HRCT severity scores of the Bhalla system were compared with chest radiographic and clinical points of the Shwachman-Kulczycki scoring system and pulmonary function tests. Only 14 of the patients older than 6 years cooperated with spirometry.
Results: HRCT scores correlated well with radiographic points (r = 0.80, P<0.0001) and clinical points (r=0.67. P<0.0001) of the Shwachman-Kulczycki system, FVC (r = 0.71 P = 0.004) and FEV1 (r = 0.66, P = 0.01). Although radiographic points correlated significantly with FVC (r = 0.61, P = 0.02) and FEV1 (r = 0.56, P = 0.04), HRCT provides a more precise scoring than the chest X-ray.
Conclusion: The HRCT scoring system may provide a sensitive method of monitoring pulmonary disease status and may replace the radiographic scoring in the Shwachman-Kulczycki system. It may be helpful especially in follow-up of small children too young to cooperate with spirometry.