Can medical imaging procedures cause radiation poisoning?

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No, it would be very unusual to have radiation poisoning from medical imaging. The amount of radiation absorbed by the body is measured in units called grays (Gy). Mild symptoms of radiation poisoning can occur at doses as low as 0.3 Gy. The life-threatening complications require higher doses (from at least 1 to 6 Gy, depending duration of exposure). While many medical imaging procedures use ionizing radiation, the absorbed dose is far below the levels that cause radiation poisoning. Specifically, the exposure from imaging modalities such as x-rays is less than 0.1 Gy. Procedures with the highest levels of exposure include computed tomography scans, certain cardiology procedures, and interventional procedures that use fluoroscopy. Fluoroscopy is an imaging technique that captures motion and that requires a longer duration of radiation exposure.

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Diagnostic Imaging

Diagnostic Imaging

Diagnostic imaging includes ultrasounds, X-rays, CT scans and MRIs. These create images of different parts of the body and aid in diagnosing diseases and conditions allowing for a course of treatment to be prescribed. Learn more a...

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.