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March 18, 2011

March 17, 2011|By Cory Franklin
The use of CT scans has exploded. In 1980, 3 million CT scans were performed. The projection for 2011 is 72 million, nearly 20,000 every day. Between 2000 and 2005, Medicare spending on CT scans more than doubled.
Radiation from CT overuse

Any Iodine Pills left?

This CT explosion has raised questions in medical circles whether radiation associated with CT scanning may result in increased cancer risk, especially in children. The typical CT scan exposes a patient to more radiation than chest X-rays, mammograms or airport scanners. A full-body CT scan for a serious trauma patient delivers an amount approaching the annual dose limit of radiation exposure for radiation workers.

There is no good epidemiologic data at present, but researchers extrapolating exposure from atomic bomb survivors at Hiroshima and Nagasaki have theorized thousands of people might develop future cancers from CT scan radiation. This is not yet a reason for patients to avoid CT scans, but it is a reason for physicians to be concerned.
It took only one generation for CT scanning to revolutionize medicine, yet its very success has created uncertainty over what its precise role is in patient care. Answering these questions is paramount to that determination.
Here in the USA reaction to disaster in Japan:
radiation panic in the US

Any Iodine Pills?

-High demand for gas masks and pet shelters at RDD USA Military Surplus ‘getting towards sales levels of 9/11’

-U.S. Surgeon General warns Americans to ‘be prepared’ for harmful radiation from Japan to hit West Coast
-Nukepills.com sells 250,000 potassium iodide pills while Anbex gets three orders a MINUTE instead of per week
-Packs of 14 pills that usually cost $9.99 changing hands on Amazon.com and eBay for $250 to $400
-Geigercounters.com begs people not to place any more orders after it sells out of radiation detection gadgets
-Some worried people stocking up on seaweed, red wine, vodka, bread and chilli peppers as preventative measures
-Surge in purchases of gas masks and emergency survival kits including food, water and space blankets reported

The end is coming!

Are we stupid here? So easy to get frightened? Are we so afraid of our lives that we are ready to panic at the slightest chance of a problem? Are we Americans so weak?

Shouldn’t we worry more about the CT scans that we are so ready to use?
Is there any sanity here?
Most likely we are in more danger from our cell phones than from disaster in Japan

CT scans and radiation

Author: Yoselin
January 11, 2011

CT scan and radiation

CT scan

X-ray computed tomography (CT) is a medical imaging method employing tomography created by computer processing. Digital geometry processing is used to generate a three-dimensional image of the inside of an object from a large series of two-dimensional X-ray images taken around a single axis of rotation.

Usage of CT has increased dramatically over the last two decades in many countries. An estimated 72 million scans were performed in the United States in 2007. It is estimated that 0.4% of current cancers in the United States are due to CTs performed in the past and that this may increase to as high as 1.5-2% with 2007 rates of CT usage.
It is projected that in 2010, one in every 10 Americans will have a CT scan. Overall, more than 70 million CT scans – at least four million on children – are performed in the U.S. annually. This is in stark contrast to the mere three million in 1980.
According to an AP story, federal officials are concerned that some medical patients may be getting too much radiation, in part because of the growing frequency of CT scans.
Nationally, the 2008 average for double CT scans of the chest was five percent and for the abdomen was 19 percent, said The Tribune noting that CT scan overuse subjects patients to radiation that could be cancer causing. Experts feel that while CT scans are an important life-saving medical tool, they may be being ordered more often than necessary, explained The Tribune.
Consider this, every double chest CT scan exposes the patient to a massive 700 times more radiation than a chest X-ray; double abdominal scans dose the patient with 22 times more radiation, said The Tribune. Emerging research reveals a link exists between cancer and radiation delivered via diagnostic testing.
Dangers of CAT scan

Dangers of CT scan

Citing the AP, that although radiation seems to be everywhere, from “airport scanners, power lines, cell phones … microwaves,” the worst comes from medical scans, with Americans—accounting for receipt of half of the more sophisticated medical procedures utilizing radiation–-receiving the largest quantities.

The President’s Cancer Panel (PCP) stated that the link between environmental carcinogens and cancers are much greater than ever realized, pointing to the huge increase in exposure to medical radiation. The PCP report said that a typical “organ dose range for computed tomography (CT),” when considering multiple scans and operator administration, “is 5-100 mSv,” the same dose an “average Hiroshima bomb drop survivor who stood several thousand yards from ground zero” experienced, said DotMed.
According to a study in the Archives of Internal Medicine in 2009, CT scan radiation alone will cause nearly 30,000 unnecessary cancer cases. This will lead to about 14,500 deaths, Dr. Mercola points out.
A 2007 New England Journal of Medicine study even gives a much higher estimate of up to 3 million cancer cases due to the overuse of CT scans.
Dr. Mercola believes that many CT scans are unnecessary but are still administered because:
Doctors don’t want to be sued for malpractice if they miss something.
Some patients ask their doctors for unnecessary scans because they are convinced of the benefits of advanced diagnostic tools. The tools they hear about from advertisements don’t even disclose the risks of radiation.
Some doctors want to screen worried and at-risk patients – like former smokers for lung cancer – “just to be safe.”
Doctors seek to earn back their investment on the technology.
Commercially advertised whole-body CT scans want to “find everything wrong with you” and target patients who can afford the procedure.
Other Reasons Why You Should Avoid CT Scans, X-Rays, and Mammogram Radiation
Radiation emitted by diagnostic imaging equipment causes chromosomal mutations and is far more harmful to your DNA than free radicals. Though not lethal, the damage done to the genetic material of every internal organ or cell lying within the path of an X-ray beam is cumulative and irreparable, Dr. Mercola explains.
Explore all other options before undergoing a CT scan, mammogram, or other diagnostic techniques that use radiation.

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