In Naperville, a number of hospitals have started taking actions to ensure that children receive the lowest radiation doses during imaging. Radiologists in these facilities are following FDA’s proposal which include recommendations to minimize radiation doses delivered to children during imaging.
Radiation-based imaging techniques, such as X-ray and CT, deliver radiation that accumulates in the body of children. This can result in damaging their DNA when the doses are too high or there is prolonged exposure.
Rajit Shetty, of DuPage Medical Group’s radiology department, said “There is probably a slight risk,” adding “But we always have to weigh it against the benefits of getting the test done.” FDA’s proposal includes asking modality providers to provide information about the settings of their systems to adjust doses for children. Hospitals such as Edward Hospital, Rush-Copley Hospital and DuPage Medical Group are using imaging systems with settings for pediatric imaging.
In addition, the facilities have been going through the accreditation process of American College of Radiology (ACR). The process includes extensive reviews of the modalities and imaging techniques used at these hospitals. ACR accreditation recognizes the high level of services provided in the accredited facility.
Tom Markuszewski, director of imaging services at Rush-Copley Hospital, said “It’s an easy question to ask: ‘Is this facility ACR accredited’,” adding “Then you know a qualified medical physicist has checked the dosage on the equipment.”