Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Study examines cancer risk from pediatric radiation exposure from CT scans

Date:
June 10, 2013
Source:
American Medical Association (AMA)
Summary:
According to a study of seven U.S. healthcare systems, the use of computed tomography (CT) scans of the head, abdomen/pelvis, chest or spine, in children younger than age 14 more than doubled from 1996 to 2005, and this associated radiation is projected to potentially increase the risk of radiation-induced cancer in these children in the future.

According to a study of seven U.S. healthcare systems, the use of computed tomography (CT) scans of the head, abdomen/pelvis, chest or spine, in children younger than age 14 more than doubled from 1996 to 2005, and this associated radiation is projected to potentially increase the risk of radiation-induced cancer in these children in the future.
Credit: ep stock / Fotolia

According to a study of seven U.S. healthcare systems, the use of computed tomography (CT) scans of the head, abdomen/pelvis, chest or spine, in children younger than age 14 more than doubled from 1996 to 2005, and this associated radiation is projected to potentially increase the risk of radiation-induced cancer in these children in the future, according to a study published Online First by JAMA Pediatrics.

The use of CT in pediatrics has increased over the last two decades. The ionizing radiation doses delivered by the tests are higher than convention radiography and are in ranges that have been linked to an increased risk of cancer. Children are more sensitive to radiation-induced carcinogenesis and have many years of life left for cancer to develop, the authors write in the study background.

"The increased use of CT in pediatrics, combined with the wide variability in radiation doses, has resulted in many children receiving a high-dose examination," the study notes.

Diana L. Miglioretti, Ph.D., of the Group Health Research Institute and University of California, Davis, and colleagues quantified trends in the use of CT in pediatrics plus the associated radiation exposure and estimated potential cancer risk using data from seven U.S. health care systems.

The authors note the use of CT doubled for children younger than 5 years old and tripled for children 5 to 14 years of age between 1996 and 2005 before remaining stable between 2006 and 2007 and then beginning to decline.

The projected lifetime attributable risks of solid cancer were higher for younger patients and girls than for older patients and boy. The risks were also higher for patients who underwent CT scans of the abdomen/pelvis or spine than for patients who underwent other types of CT scans, according to the results.

The estimates also suggest that for girls, a radiation-induced solid cancer is projected to potentially result from every 300 to 390 abdomen/pelvis scans, 330 to 480 chest scans, and 270 to 800 spine scans, depending on age. The potential risk of leukemia was highest from head scans for children younger than 5 years of age at a rate of 1.9 cases per 10,000CT scans, the results show.

The authors estimate that 4,870 future cancers could be caused by the 4 million pediatric CT scans performed each year. Based on their calculations, the authors also suggest that reducing the highest 25 percent of doses to the median (midpoint) may prevent 43 percent of these cancers, the authors suggest.

"Thus, more research is urgently needed to determine when CT in pediatrics can lead to improved health outcomes and whether other imaging methods (or no imaging) could be as effective. For now, it is important for both the referring physician and the radiologist to consider whether the risks of CT exceed the diagnostic value it provides over other tests, based on current evidence," the study concludes.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Medical Association (AMA). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Diana L. Miglioretti et al. The Use of Computed Tomography in Pediatrics and the Associated Radiation Exposure and Estimated Cancer RiskComputed Tomography in Pediatrics. JAMA Pediatrics, 2013; 1 DOI: 10.1001/jamapediatrics.2013.311

Cite This Page:

American Medical Association (AMA). "Study examines cancer risk from pediatric radiation exposure from CT scans." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 June 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130610192536.htm>.
American Medical Association (AMA). (2013, June 10). Study examines cancer risk from pediatric radiation exposure from CT scans. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130610192536.htm
American Medical Association (AMA). "Study examines cancer risk from pediatric radiation exposure from CT scans." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130610192536.htm (accessed September 18, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Artificial Sweetener Could Promote Diabetes

Artificial Sweetener Could Promote Diabetes

Newsy (Sep. 17, 2014) Doctors once thought artificial sweeteners lacked the health risks of sugar, but a new study says they can impact blood sugar levels the same way. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Vaccine Trial Gets Underway at Oxford University

Ebola Vaccine Trial Gets Underway at Oxford University

AFP (Sep. 17, 2014) A healthy British volunteer is to become the first person to receive a new vaccine for the Ebola virus after US President Barack Obama called for action against the epidemic and warned it was "spiralling out of control." Duration: 01:02 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obesity Rates Steady Even As Americans' Waistlines Expand

Obesity Rates Steady Even As Americans' Waistlines Expand

Newsy (Sep. 17, 2014) Researchers are puzzled as to why obesity rates remain relatively stable as average waistlines continue to expand. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

Newsy (Sep. 16, 2014) President Obama is expected to send 3,000 troops to West Africa as part of the effort to contain Ebola's spread. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins