Kudos to Chicago Tribune front page story on "perfect storm" of CT radiation risks

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Headline: “CT scans may pose cancer risk, new research indicates: Doctors, patients should weigh risks vs. rewards of medical imaging.” Good infographics in the paper and online (see below). And a sober ending:

“And some doctors who own scanning equipment have a financial stake in diagnostic imaging. Research shows that doctors who own machines perform two to seven times more imaging tests than those who don’t, said Dr. Vijay Rao, chair of radiology at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia.

Moreover, “the physicians who own this equipment and order the tests have generally had no training in radiology and little understanding of the complexities of radiation dosing” and its attendant health risks, Rao said. “For patients, this is absolutely the perfect storm.”

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Greg Pawelski

March 8, 2010 at 12:27 pm

I remember well how much my oldest brother had to train in radiology to know and teach it well. I was amazed years ago when I found out that physicians who own this equipment and ordered the tests did not necessarily have the training in radiology and very little understanding of its complexities. Indeed, the “perfect storm.” Then I found out that some night-shift (our time) in India was reading my wife’s scans so her physician could have the results the next day. Geesh!