Pediatric Acute Trauma Trajectories Study

About the PATT Study

The Pediatric Acute TraumaTrajectories (PATT) study aims to identify risk and resilience factors for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in youth victims of interpersonal violence. This study investigates the neurobehavioral changes in the immediate aftermath of trauma that may, in the future, help us identify which youth victims may require early intervention. The PATT study is longitudinal, meaning we will assess subjects soon after the traumatic event and continue assessment up to a year after. As part of this study, youth subjects will undergo an MRI scan and play memory and attention games on an iPad. Youth and caregiver subjects will be asked to provide saliva and hair samples and fill out questionnaires about their feelings and experiences. We hope to enroll a total of 280 youth subjects and their caregivers.

Contact Information:
(414) 550-6831

Study Team

Chris Larson, PhD

Principal Investigator

Michael Levas

Principal Investigator

Ale Gonzalez-Van Wart

Research Coordinator

Ciara Ayala

Research Assistant

Michael Liuzzi

Graduate Research Assistant

Graduate Research Assistants

Farah Harb
Kevin Petranu

Things to Know Before You Arrive


The meeting location for your appointment will depend on room availability and the time of your child’s MRI scan. We will text you with this information, but if you are unsure where you will meet, please call or text the admin staff.

Your appointment may begin at one location and end at the other location.

  • Froedtert Pavilion
    8750 William Coffey Drive, Milwaukee, WI 53226
  • Center for Imaging Research
    9072 W Connell Avenue, Milwaukee, WI 53226


  • Youth participants
    1st visit: $125 + up to $42 extra from MRI game
    2nd visit: $125 + up to $42 extra from MRI game
    3rd visit: $175 + up to $42 extra from MRI game
  • Parents/caregiver
    $50 at each visit


  • 1st visit: up to 5.5 hours
  • 2nd visit: up to 4.25 hours
  • 3rd visit: up to 4.25 hours

Frequently Asked Questions

What if I am not able to drive to the appointment?
We provide Uber rides for those who need them. Please let us know if you would like an Uber ride to and from your appointment.

Who should attend this appointment?
Your child who was injured and treated at Children’s Wisconsin and their caregiver will attend the study appointments. We ask that, if possible, you do not bring additional family members.-

Is an MRI scan safe?
MRI scans are different from other types of imaging. MRI stands for magnetic resonance imaging, meaning the MRI scanner uses a large magnet and radio waves to look into your body. There is no exposure to x-rays or radioactivity, and the risk of injury is very low. Because the MRI uses a large magnet, we do not want anyone with certain metal implants or objects to enter the MRI scanner. We will ask you and your child questions to confirm that your child is safe for scanning.

What if my child is not MRI safe?
If you have any concerns that your child may not be able to participate in the scan (e.g., they have braces), please contact our study staff to assess MRI safety. If we determine that we cannot scan your child, we may still ask you to participate in our study through questionnaires and other non-imaging data.

Will I get to see the images?
Yes, we will send you a picture of your child’s brain.

Do I have to provide biospecimens?
No! You may opt-out of one or both types of biospecimens (hair and saliva). Biospecimens are optional; you can change your mind or make a different choice from your child, and you can change your mind from one study visit to the next. For more information, please see our biospecimen FAQ sheet.

Can I drop off my child and come back at the end of the appointment?
We ask that caregivers stay for the entirety of the first visit. However, during the second and third visits, caregivers can leave after completing their questionnaires and pick up their child later.