Friday, December 7, 2007

Is Computed Tomography Safe?

Drs. David Brenner and Eric Hall recently warned that the increased popularity of CT scans, particularly in children, can lead to an increased incidence of cancer ("Computed Tomography – An Increasing Source of Radiation Exposure," New England Journal of Medicine, 357:2277-2284, 2007). Widespread awareness of this research may lead to the avoidance of unnecessary CT examinations. (This conclusion remains controversial, see statements by the American Association of Physicists in Medicine and the Radiological Society of North America.) Brenner and Hall's earlier work on this issue is discussed in the 4th edition of Intermediate Physics for Medicine and Biology (page 472).

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