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Cancer risk in overuse of radiation-based medical imaging 

Radiation in the ICU: How much is too much?  https://www.wndu.com/content/news/Radiation-in-the-ICU-How-much-is-too-much-504012981.html   By Maureen McFadden | , Jan 07, 2019  

The use of radiation-based imaging has risen dramatically in the past decade, and medical radiation now accounts for a significant proportion of all radiation exposure in the U.S.

Critically ill patients are often subjected to many CT scans and X-rays, but who is keeping track of when enough is enough?

When he noticed one of his patients had undergone 100 X-rays, Cleveland Clinic Dr. Sudhir Krishnan was concerned.

“I said, surely, someone is keeping track of this, some regional, local, or national authority is keeping track on the amount of radiation exposure a patient typically gets,” he said. “And I realized that wasn’t the case. There’s nobody.”

There is a standard federal limit for radiation dosage, but a recent Cleveland Clinic study revealed something shocking.

“Some exceeded a number of more than 100 milisiverts within these six days,” Krishnan said. “By Federal Occupational Standards, that dose cannot be exceeded in five years, and we have that happening in six days.”

As patients move from different facilities, the information about the radiation they have received isn’t transferred, which could lead to bad results.

“Patients could develop a certain kind of cancer because they’ve been exposed to a certain amount of radiation,” Krishnan said.

X-rays, CT scans and fluoroscopic surgery are the most common sources of radiation. But Cleveland Clinic Dr. Charles Martin says something needs to change

“Improving communication amongst the multiple specialties to see if there’s one way to get many pieces of information from one study [is necessary],” Martin said.

Talk to your doctor about it and be sure to ask, as Krishnan suggests, “if there is no suitable alternative and is absolutely necessary, then one would have to weigh the benefits versus risk and proceed with what’s required.”

The Cleveland Clinic is working to develop a tool that tracks radiation doses and uses our electronic medical records as a home for all of this information.

RESEARCH SUMMARY
TOO MUCH RADIATION IN THE ICU?
REPORT #2597

BACKGROUND: Radiation may be defined as energy traveling through space. Non-ionizing radiation is essential to life, but excessive exposures will cause tissue damage. All forms of ionizing radiation have sufficient energy to ionize atoms that may destabilize molecules within cells and lead to tissue damage.
Radiation sources are found in a wide range of occupational settings. If radiation is not properly controlled it can be potentially hazardous to the health of workers. Non-ionizing radiation is described as a series of energy waves composed of oscillating electric and magnetic fields traveling at the speed of light. Non-ionizing radiation includes the spectrum of ultraviolet (UV), visible light, infrared (IR), microwave (MW), radio frequency (RF), and extremely low frequency (ELF). Lasers commonly operate in the UV, visible, and IR frequencies. Non-ionizing radiation is found in a wide range of occupational settings and can pose a considerable health risk to potentially exposed workers if not properly controlled. Ionizing radiation sources may be found in a wide range of occupational settings, including health care facilities, research institutions, nuclear reactors and their support facilities, nuclear weapon production facilities, and other various manufacturing settings, just to name a few. These radiation sources can pose a considerable health risk to affected workers if not properly controlled.
(Source: https://www.osha.gov/SLTC/radiation/ and https://www.osha.gov/SLTC/radiation_nonionizing/index.html and https://www.osha.gov/SLTC/radiationionizing/index.html)

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January 10, 2019 - Posted by | 2 WORLD, health

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