Approved by the Joint Reference Committee, January 2005
Although knowledge is increasing regarding specific pathways and specific brain areas involved in mental disease states, at present the use of brain imaging to study psychiatric disorders is still considered a research tool. Continued study of child and adolescent psychiatric disorders using a variety of brain imaging methods, as well as refinements in imaging techniques, may result in evidence supporting the utility of these tools for clinical work in the future. Imaging research cannot yet be used to diagnose psychiatric illness and may not be useful in clinical practice for a number of years. In the future, imaging techniques may be useful to examine medication effects and predict medication response.