Press Esc to close
Saturday 01 November 2014
News updated at 2:39 PM IST
Weather
Max: 25°C
Min : 19°C
In Bangalore
Partially cloudy

CT scans in childhood increase cancer risk

Paris, Jun 6, 2012, AFP:

Children exposed to multiple CT scans could be up to three times likelier to contract cancer of the blood, brain or bone marrow later in life, according to research published on Wednesday.

Writing in The Lancet medical journal, a team of scientists in Canada, Britain and the United States said the cancer risk, in absolute terms, appears to be small.

But they appealed for radiation doses from CT scans to be kept at a minimum and for alternatives to be used where appropriate. The researchers claimed their study was the first to provide direct evidence of a link between exposure from CT radiation in childhood and later cancer risk.


“Of utmost importance is that where CT is used, it is only used where fully justified from a clinical perspective,” said lead author Mark Pearce of Newcastle University’s Institute of Health and Society.

As a vital diagnostic technique, use of the CT scan has increased rapidly in the past 10 years, particularly in the United States, the researchers said.

“However, potential cancer risks exist due to the ionising radiation used in CT scans, especially in children who are more radiosensitive than adults.”

Computerised tomography — commonly known as CT — is an X-ray technique that produces images of the body’s internal structures in cross sections.

The researchers studied nearly 180,000 people who underwent a CT scan as children or young adults (under 22) in Britain between 1985 and 2002.

Of these, 74 were subsequently diagnosed with leukaemia and 135 with brain  cancer according to data for the period 1985 to 2008.

The team calculated that compared to patients who received a radiation dose of less than five milli-Grays (mGy), those who were given a cumulative dose of 30 mGy had about three times the risk of developing leukaemia (cancer of the blood or marrow) later in life. Those who received 50 to 74 mGy had thrice the risk of brain tumours.

The study did not compare children who had been scanned against those who had not been scanned.

Put into context, this means that among every 10,000 patients who received one CT scan before the age of 10, there would be one extra case of leukaemia and one extra brain tumour per 10 mGy of radiation in the 10 years after exposure.

“Further refinements to allow reduction in CT doses should be a priority, not only for the radiology community, but also for manufacturers,” said Pearce.

Go to Top

Photo Gallery
A view of the statue of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel on the occasion of his birth anniversary...

A view of the statue of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel on the occasion of his birth anniversary...

Congress President Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi paying tribute to former Prime Minister...

Congress President Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi paying tribute to former Prime Minister...

Artists perform during a function on the occasion of birth anniversary of Sardar...

Artists perform during a function on the occasion of birth anniversary of Sardar...

Members of Thamizhar Vazhvurimai Koottamaippu during a protest against Sri Lankan court's...

Members of Thamizhar Vazhvurimai Koottamaippu during a protest against Sri Lankan court's...

Indian cricket players during their practice session at barabati stadium in Cuttack...

Indian cricket players during their practice session at barabati stadium in Cuttack...

Delhi Police band performs at India Gate near Amar Jawan Jyoti to salute Sardar...

Delhi Police band performs at India Gate near Amar Jawan Jyoti to salute Sardar...

Army soldiers patrolling after an IED was recovered in a gas cylinder near the Circuit House...

Army soldiers patrolling after an IED was recovered in a gas cylinder near the Circuit House...

Tourist take pictures from a boat as people bath in the Ganges river in Varanasi...

Tourist take pictures from a boat as people bath in the Ganges river in Varanasi...

Devendra Fadnavis being sworn-in as the new Maharashtra Chief Minister by Governor...

Devendra Fadnavis being sworn-in as the new Maharashtra Chief Minister by Governor...

A camel herder sits as he feeds his camels at the annual cattle fair in Pushkar, in the Rajasthan...

A camel herder sits as he feeds his camels at the annual cattle fair in Pushkar, in the Rajasthan...

Copyright 2014, The Printers (Mysore) Private Ltd., 75, M.G Road, Post Box 5331, Bangalore - 560001
Tel: +91 (80) 25880000 Fax No. +91 (80) 25880523