Minimizing the Long-term Effects of Ionizing Radiation in Pediatric Computed Tomography Examinations

Document Type


Publication Date


Original Publication Title

Radiologic Technology


Rehabilitation and Sport Professions




Purpose To identify methods for minimizing the effects of ionizing radiation from pediatric computed tomography (CT) examinations, including the education of medical staff, imaging staff, and patients, and dose-reduction techniques that provide the best patient care and highest image quality at the lowest possible dose. Methods A literature search was conducted for peer-reviewed journal articles and Web-based information from professional organizations that discuss ionizing radiation in CT examinations and its effects on adult or pediatric patients. Results and Discussion The literature indicates that dose-reduction methods, such as using appropriate technical factors and shielding, are beneficial in acquiring the best image quality for proper diagnosis at the lowest dose possible to the patient. In addition, a radiologist review of examination requisitions can help eliminate duplicate orders and unnecessary examinations, along with providing recommendations for alternative examinations that do not use radiation such as ultrasonography and magnetic resonance imaging. Education for referring physicians and other medical professionals on the importance of alternative examinations and dose-reduction methods is essential to ensure they provide adequate education to pediatric patients and their families. Conclusion Patient education and radiation safety are top priorities for imaging professionals. Radiation exposure to pediatric patients should be minimized through the use of shielding, appropriate CT parameters, other dose-reduction methods, and education. Further research is needed in these areas to ensure optimal patient care.

This document is currently not available here.