Navigation Links
Hazards of CT scans overstated

College Park, MD (November 30, 2007) Concerns over possible radiation effects of CT scans detailed in a report yesterday in the New England Journal of Medicine should not scare people away from getting medically needed CT scans, as the scans play a critical role in saving the lives of thousands of people every day, according to an official with the American Association of Physicists in Medicine (AAPM).

In a statement issued Friday, Dr. John M. Boone, chairman of AAPMs science council, says that the science community remains divided over the radiation dose effects of CT scans and that the findings in the Journal article were based on flawed assumptions and were not conclusive. While agreeing with the Journal articles authors, Drs. David Brenner and Eric Hall, that CT scans should only be used judiciously and when medically necessary, Boone says CT experts in the AAPM feel that much of the message of this article may be misconstrued or misunderstood by the press or by the public who may not be experts in CT.

Brenner and Hall, in their article, said that while they save lives and speed diagnosis, the 62 million CT scans done in the United States each year may soon be responsible for 2 percent of all cancers. They further suggested that their back of the envelope estimate is that about a third of all CT scans are unnecessary.

Boone responds in his statement that the assumptions about the hazards of CT scan radiation exposure remain controversial, even among experts in radiation biology. The method of determining risk used in the article is derived from Japanese citizens exposed to large amounts of radiation during the atomic bomb attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in World War II, and the extrapolation of those extremely high radiation exposure rates down to the low CT exposures remains very controversial, Boone says.

Another significant flaw in the article was the attempt to compare the Japanese bomb victims to patients receiving CT in the US in 2007, Boone says. The article did not correct for the many underlying confounding age dependent variables that differ between (the Japanese population) and older Americans, such as the incidence of obesity and diabetes.

Boone encourages patients who have had CT scans, or are slated for CT exams in the next few weeks, to discuss with their physicians not only the radiation risks of the CT examination, but the risks of not having the diagnostic information that CT provides.

While Boone notes that Brenner and Hall are esteemed scientists and respected experts in radiation risk . . . the conclusions of the Brenner article are based on statistics and many statistical assumptions (and not) on the actual observation of somebody dying from having a CT scan.


Contact: Cecilia A. Hunter
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)

Related medicine news :

1. Hazards of using crib bumper pads outweigh their benefits
2. European directive will halt use of MRI scans; cancer diagnosis and treatment will suffer
3. PET scans can accurately detect a breast tumors response to chemotherapy
4. High-tech CT scans: not a bad choice to test for clogged arteries
5. New Computerized Scans Effective for Spotting Clogged Arteries
6. PET scans useful for some cancer treatment, but how do patients fare?
7. PET Scans Can Spot Cervical Cancers Return
8. Post-treatment PET scans can reassure cervical cancer patients
9. CT scans to determine heart disease in the emergency room
10. Obesity Keeps Patients From Needed CT Scans After Surgery
11. PET Scans Could Boost Lung Cancer Diagnosis
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... 2015 , ... Consistent with the Radiology Business Management ... Radiology Marketing Programs meeting will showcase some of the best 2015 radiology ... Palace in Las Vegas with a pre-conference session on a collaborative approach for ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... Minn. (PRWEB) , ... November 27, 2015 , ... ... start failing. Secura Consultants has prided itself for not only fulfilling the needs ... income protection solutions at an affordable price and providing top-tier customer service. However, ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... , ... November 27, 2015 , ... ... largest, most successful and prominent nonprofit healthcare organizations in the country. They have ... with various organizations, and helped advance the healthcare industry as a whole through ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... , ... Indosoft Inc., developer and distributor of the world-class ... (Long Term Support) into its Q-Suite 5.10 product line. , Making the change ... version of Asterisk that will receive not only security fixes, but feature and ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... ... November 26, 2015 , ... CognisantMD ... for diagnostic imaging in the Waterloo region. Using the Ocean Platform, family physicians ... directly from their electronic medical record (EMR) without the need for redundant patient ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/25/2015)... , Nov. 25, 2015 On Tuesday, ... federal bellwether trial against Wright Medical Technology, Inc. ... their Conserve metal-on-metal hip implant device, awarded $11 ... a two week trial and three days of ... hip device was defectively designed and unreasonably dangerous, ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... Nov. 25, 2015  Henry Schein, Inc., the world,s ... office-based dental, medical and animal health practitioners, will unveil ... Henry Schein ConnectDental® Pavilion , which brings together ... open solutions designed to help any practice or laboratory ... for a schedule of experts appearing at the ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... 2015 Allergan plc (NYSE: AGN ) today ... New York State Attorney General,s Office to ... and other statutes with the Attorney General over the decision ... marketing and selling the now generic version of memantine immediate ... liability, has released its counterclaims against New York ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: