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CT and Radiation Concerns

"Helical (aka slip ring or multidetector) computed tomography (CT) has revolutionized diagnostic cross-sectional imaging by enabling the scanning of a volume of tissue instead of scanning the patient one slice at a time. This technology, combined with further advances in data handling, has allowed radiologists an unprecedented ability to image the body and reconstruct data in multiple planes with little loss of resolution in ever shorter times. It is important for us to recognize that, as in anything in medicine or life, this incredible technology comes with a price. That price is increased radiation exposure.
A recent study from Sweden reviewed the cognitive ability of young men applying for the Swedish military who had been exposed to low-dose irradiation in infancy for cutaneous cranial hemangiomas. Brain dosage was estimated and correlated significantly with subsequent poor school performance, attendance, and cognitive ability. "
From an interesting article in Medscape-CT Scans and Cancer: How One Radiologist Is Safeguarding His Patients by Robert Chevrier .
What we should all realise particularly in kids we should be careful about ordering repeated CT scans say for minor Head Injury or ordering a CT scan when it has been repeatedly normal. One Head CT is equivalent to 150 CXRs and Risk versus benefit analysis should be done before ordering a CT scan.
CT and Radiation Concerns Reviewed by Sumer Sethi on Wednesday, April 12, 2006 Rating: 5

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