ct scans and radiation

Is That Scan Really Necessary?

New report: Exposure to radiation from medical procedures has increased by a factor of seven in recent decades.

By Megan Othersen Gorman

Is That Scan Really Necessary?

Quiz your doc: Ask if that imaging test is really needed.

RODALE NEWS, EMMAUS, PA—Advanced medical imaging tools such as computed tomography (a.k.a. CT, or sometimes CAT, scans) allow doctors to see what’s happening inside the body without actually opening it up. Which is undoubtedly a good thing, as it’s pretty much eliminated the concept of exploratory surgery. But a new report suggests that the resulting dramatic uptick in potentially unnecessary imaging procedures could be exposing us to unhealthy amounts of radiation.

THE DETAILS: The National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements (NCRP) recently announced that Americans were exposed to more than seven times as much radiation from medical procedures in 2006 as they were in the early ’80s, largely due to a dramatic bump in CT and nuclear medicine (the branch of medicine and medical imaging that uses radioactive isotopes in the diagnosis of disease). Kenneth R. Kase, MD, senior vice president of the NCRP, reported: “These two imaging modalities alone contributed to 36 percent of the total radiation exposure [which includes background exposure from natural radiation in soil, rocks, and space], and 75 percent of the medical radiation exposure, of the U.S. population.” Since the dose of radiation used in most exams is very low, the medical benefit of the exam can outweigh the potential risk from the radiation. But radiation in any dosage can damage cells in the body, and so comes with some risk of triggering a health problem. With the surge in CTs, scientists are just now attempting to get a better sense of how much risk all these scans represent.

WHAT IT MEANS: The American College of Radiology (ACR) sees two trends at work here:

1: The vast improvement in imaging quality. Take the CT, which was developed in the early 1970s. For the first 25 years of scanning, the test could only make one image at a time. Today, radiologists can make up to 320 images simultaneously. When the resolution and the ability to image vascular structures vastly improved around 2000, the number of CTs skyrocketed.

2: The rise in “self-referrals,” or nonradiologists buying imaging equipment and prescribing in-office scans for their own patients. Radiologists typically get patient referrals from other physicians—they don’t order the scans themselves—so they can’t inflate the number of scans they perform. Nonradiologists who refer their patients to their own scanners for testing (and profit), can—and do, studies have proved. “We know from studies that when there’s financially motivated self-referral, the amount of imaging is, on average, twice as high as when there’s no financial incentive,” says James H. Thrall, MD, chair of the American College of Radiology.

Here’s how to make smart decisions about medical imaging tests:


Published on: March 23, 2009

More from our Authors

This breakthrough information links the little-known connection between diabetes, fatigue, heart disease, weight gain, high blood pressure, and more! Click here to learn more.

meizitang Significantly to

meizitang Significantly to say, botanical slimming soft gel down is a very meizitang diet pills long method, I've not meizitang slimming soft gel a winner, and I botanical diet pills attain our targets, we meizitang botanical slimming capsule ought to publish in botanical slimming soft gels a lot more detai botanical slimming meizitangl the encounter! From September with a fat loss drug .

Welcome to buy Mulberry Bags

Welcome to buy Mulberry Bags UK,we offer such as mulberry handbags,mulberry wallets,and mulberry alexa bags Which is The Most Fashiponable With Free Shipping,No Sale Tax! Discount Mulberry outlet store are always here waiting for you!

80% OFF Sale cheap mulberry bags on our mulberry outlet,Buy Mulberry bags from our Mulberry factory shop outlet!We offer free shipping from mulberry online,we Mulberry Outlet have the AAA quality with the discount prices.

Mulberry factory shop offer mulberry bags online outlet.Annually mulberrys sale season offers 80% discount on all the genuine leather bags.Shop for your favorite Mulberry now for a price you can afford.

Luxury British label Mullberry Bags was founded in 1971 and has long been recognised for its highly crafted fine leather goods. The company's strength lies in its elegant Mullberry Handbags like the Bayswater and Alexa, which both became instant fashion classics. Mulberry factory shop online like the most British historic boutique which is more than a century old, after the brand become young, multi-pocket, multi-buckles, rivets and more so with aesthetic design and practicality, once again popular around the world.


Radiation hazards in Dentistry

No mention was made regarding the control of exposure for the above mentioned speciality as frequently the patients are told that they are necessary and may be so as requirements of the Billing puposes diagnosis changes from previous visits etc,.
There are salivery Thyroid Parathyroid Lymph glands in the area of exposure as well as other stuctures like tongue arteries lymphatics nerves etc,. in the area .
Old fashioned X-Rays and now a days the Digital ones are taken for the pediatric poulation since early ages............
Can frequency be decreased by discussing the possible exposures
and resolving the questionable effects ?!

Start Your Wellness Journey!
Sign up for updates on Rodale Wellness and get your FREE wellness journal to help you find your path to vibrant health. Click here to start your unique journey!

Free Newsletter
Sign up for our FREE newsletters to stay up to date on all of our wellness news.

  The Daily Fix
Useful news and practical tips to help you live a healthy life on a healthier planet.

  Wellness in Action
Find your path to vibrant health, and get your free wellness journal as our thanks!

You may unsubscribe at any time.

Your Privacy Rights. About Us.