Controlling Your Radiation Dose: A Delicate Balance

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Radiation exposure is a major concern for all imaging specialists as well as the patients and referring doctors. The November issue of Imaging Life covers the subject, shedding light on some information that most patients aren’t aware of, but would probably be glad to know. CT scans usually consist of larger doses of radiation than your average X-Ray, and with good cause: they take significantly more images in a single study. What most people don’t know is that newer CT scanners allow the technologist (the person taking the images) to control how much radiation you’re exposed to. Certain body types allow the technologist to lower the dosage significantly.

I was actually curious about how it worked and had our tech, Marie, walk me through it. In layman’s terms the strength of the radiation beam can be tuned according to the type of body being scanned and they type of images required. Dial it down too much and the patient gets unnecessary radiation exposure and useless images. It’s a delicate balancing act to allow minimal exposure while still getting good images and an experienced technologist is key.

Alisa Flom

Patient Relations Coordinator

 

Care. Comfort. Convenience. For our patients. For our doctors.