Medical imaging is a powerful tool for diagnosing and treating medical conditions; however, it can also expose patients to excess radiation levels. Fortunately, recent technological advancements have resulted in the development of new ways to reduce radiation exposure during imaging.
Here are a few ways these advancements are helping patients receive the care they need while reducing their radiation exposure.
Clinicians have always used guidelines for the use of CT scans. Still, they recently developed new guidelines for the benefit of CT scans on the head, neck, chest, and abdomen/pelvis areas of the body–especially in pediatric practice.
Clinicians can reduce or eliminate the need for CT scans if the child is awake and alert, if the blood work is normal, and if the patient is not experiencing abdominal pain.
A study of 146 children not exposed to the excess CT scan radiation using the new guidelines showed no clinically significant missed injuries.
One of the most significant advancements in this area is using smart software to reduce radiation dose in computerized tomography (CT) scans. This software analyzes patient size, age, and other factors to determine the dosage necessary for an accurate scan that minimizes radiation exposure. In some cases, reducing radiation doses by up to 90 percent has been possible without any decrease in diagnostic accuracy.
Lower Radiation Levels in the New CT Machines
In addition to using innovative software to reduce doses, researchers are also looking at new technologies, such as low-dose CT machines, that can achieve similar results without any additional processing needed.
Technicians have designed these machines with unique components that limit X-ray emissions while still providing high-quality imaging. As a result, patients can receive the same level of care without worrying about unnecessary radiation exposure.
Reducing Radiation Exposure with Ultrasound
Finally, reducing radiation exposure through ultrasound technology is more progressive. For clinicians using sound waves instead of X-rays or other forms of energy, ultrasound technology can provide doctors with highly detailed imaging with no risk of exposing patients to dangerous radiation levels.
Ultrasound is an ideal option for pregnant women and children who may be more sensitive to the effects of radiation than adults.
Recent advancements have made it easier for medical professionals to provide high-quality care while minimizing their patients’ exposure to harmful radiation.
With the medical profession redefining the guidelines, using low-dose scans, better x-ray machinery, and more ultrasounds, many options are now available for reducing radiation exposures during imaging procedures—all without sacrificing diagnostic accuracy or quality care.
That’s great news for anyone who needs an imaging scan but wants to ensure they’re taking steps to protect their health and safety!