CT scans being overused - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

CT scans being overused

By Karen Cohilas - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) – A study in a leading medical journal says CT scans are being used far more frequently than necessary and posing a growing danger to patients.

CT tests use far more radiation than ordinary X-rays, and radiation exposure raises the risk of cancer over time. A body scan CT exposes the body to about 1,000 times more radiation than a typical chest X-ray.

Phoebe Radiologist Dr. Peter Taylor says there's no question Ct's are overused, and scanning forms that don't use radiation, like MRIs and ultrasound should be used more frequently.

He said, "America is finally waking up to the fact that we're cooking the heck out of ourselves and probably most of the time unnecessarily. Partly because of defensive medicine, partly because we just didn't really know. People just didn't think about it."

He says doctors often order the scans to cover all their bases because they worry about being sued. About 10% of the U-S population have CT scans performed each year, and that number is growing by 10% each year.

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