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RADIATION WORRY

ANCHOR LEAD: SHOULD YOU BE WORRIED ABOUT HOW MUCH RADIATION MEDICAL TESTS INVOLVE?  ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS

Americans are exposed to seven times more radiation today for medical testing than they were just a decade ago, a public health watchdog group asserts.  Eliot Fishman, a CT expert at Johns Hopkins, says everyone in this field of medicine is paying attention to this issue.

FISHMAN:  The dosage of the studies today compared to where they were two years ago is a factor of ninety percent less.  There’s a measure of radiation dose called it’s called milliseiverts.  So the average cardiac CT was probably in the range of 15-20 milliseiverts two years ago, and still is in many places.  The scanners that are being introduced in the spring of 2009 will have  a dose of around one milliseiverts which means we’re talking about a 90-95% decrease in dose, so one of the things to recognize is we are working very hard on minimizing any potential risk.                 :32

Fishman says this is a very compelling reason for patients to seek out the centers that have the latest machines rather than just going for studies where it may be most convenient.  At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.


-- JHMI --
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