HEADLINE: RISK OF CT
ANCHOR LEAD: IS THE RADIATION EXPOSURE WORTH CERTAIN SCREENING TESTS? ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
Computerized tomography or CT scanning has revolutionized many medical tests, but is getting the blood vessels to your heart screened using the technique worth the considerable amount of radiation exposure? No, says a recent study predicting cancer risk related to radiation exposure. Rick Lange, chief of clinical cardiology at Johns Hopkins, explains.
LANGE: What the recent data shows is there’s a substantial amount of radiation exposure with this, and that radiation exposure increases someone’s lifetime risk for developing cancer. That lifetime risk is higher in people who receive CT scans at a younger age, and it also is related to the amount of radiation that one gets. With a single CT scan, it’s estimated that the lifetime cancer risk for a 20 year old woman is one in 143, as opposed to an 80 year old man where it’s one in 3000. :27
Lange says there’s really no reason for such a test to be done unless risk factors are present. I’m Elizabeth Tracey reporting.