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#4643189 - 01/22/18 05:02 PM WORRIED: CT scan Dangers
SumpChump Online   content


Registered: 02/11/14
Posts: 1976
Loc: Upper Midwest by the Lakes USA
Family history of blood pressure related Aortic problems. I have no high BP but cardiologist wants a nearly FULL body CT scan. My understanding is that it is many many times the radiation of a traditional Xray and if they use an ECG (heart rythm synced photographing method) that slows the process to prevent motion blur on image and the XRay exposure is significantly more than even a regular CT scan. Significantly more than a Typical CT. Yikes! I'm only 42 ... doc says CT exposure is overhyped...but I want to get 40more years out of these internal organs such an pancreas, after the CT whereas most of his patients are already only 7-10 years from "it dont matter anymore".
And then there is the kidney damaging iodine based contrast they inject.

Worried here fellas. Rock and a hard place...

Do i get a baseline image of my body which "may" reveal things to watch at the expense of a gauranteed massive radiation exposure and kidney whammy via the contrast?

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#4643193 - 01/22/18 05:07 PM Re: WORRIED: CT scan Dangers [Re: SumpChump]
Danh Offline


Registered: 10/16/10
Posts: 1751
Loc: .
Ask for an MRI instead. MRIs produce essentially no radiation and better define soft tissue. They do take longer and are likely more expensive though.

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#4643194 - 01/22/18 05:09 PM Re: WORRIED: CT scan Dangers [Re: SumpChump]
CKN Offline


Registered: 10/14/14
Posts: 3702
Loc: Utah
Originally Posted By: SumpChump
Family history of blood pressure related Aortic problems. I have no high BP but cardiologist wants a nearly FULL body CT scan. My understanding is that it is many many times the radiation of a traditional Xray and if they use an ECG (heart rythm synced photographing method) that slows the process to prevent motion blur on image and the XRay exposure is significantly more than even a regular CT scan. Significantly more than a Typical CT. Yikes! I'm only 42 ... doc says CT exposure is overhyped...but I want to get 40more years out of these internal organs such an pancreas, after the CT whereas most of his patients are already only 7-10 years from "it dont matter anymore".
And then there is the kidney damaging iodine based contrast they inject.

Worried here fellas. Rock and a hard place...

Do i get a baseline image of my body which "may" reveal things to watch at the expense of a gauranteed massive radiation exposure and kidney whammy via the contrast?


Sounds like you have been on the Internet. Your true concerns need to be discussed with your doctor and not on an oil forum. At least IMHO.

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#4643195 - 01/22/18 05:11 PM Re: WORRIED: CT scan Dangers [Re: SumpChump]
Virtus_Probi Offline


Registered: 06/25/15
Posts: 3970
Loc: New England
Why is your doctor worried enough to get this massive scan if you don't have the high blood pressure that triggers problems in your family?

A friend of mine who was in his fellowship when my father had a stroke gave me some priceless advice about dealing with doctors...he told me they were being trained to basically browbeat patients into doing what the doctors wanted. He told me to ask lots of questions, refuse to accept not being given reasonable answers, and take ownership of the decision making process. Not that the doctors were to be ignored, but they had to justify their positions and give me and my dad good reasons for us to agree with what they wanted to do.
If your doctor can't give you really good reasons for the full scan, don't feel like you have to do it.
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#4643202 - 01/22/18 05:20 PM Re: WORRIED: CT scan Dangers [Re: SumpChump]
PandaBear Offline


Registered: 08/05/02
Posts: 14220
Loc: Silicon Valley
Whole body MRI is very expensive, I doubt they will give you a whole body MRI when CT was originally asked for.
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#4643203 - 01/22/18 05:20 PM Re: WORRIED: CT scan Dangers [Re: SumpChump]
Camprunner Offline


Registered: 02/19/08
Posts: 1034
Loc: MA.
Frankly I would not worry so much about the scan get it dun! I'm 48 and I have been getting CAT and MRI scans every 6 months for 5 years now. Other then the fact it lets the doctors know what is going on with my cancer I have no side effects.

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#4643218 - 01/22/18 05:34 PM Re: WORRIED: CT scan Dangers [Re: SumpChump]
MolaKule Offline


Registered: 06/05/02
Posts: 19042
Loc: Iowegia - USA
Physics-wise, CT scans produce very short pulses of X-rays. It is fast and the amount of radiation received is minimal, probably less than an airplane trip across country.

https://www.radiologyinfo.org/en/info.cfm?pg=bodyct

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/153201.php


Edited by MolaKule (01/22/18 05:37 PM)

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#4643230 - 01/22/18 05:59 PM Re: WORRIED: CT scan Dangers [Re: SumpChump]
goodtimes Offline


Registered: 12/08/10
Posts: 2860
Loc: california
They have newer machines now that emit less radiation. Talk it over with the doctor, and the place that will do the scan. A little knowledge is a dangerous thing as they say.

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#4643231 - 01/22/18 05:59 PM Re: WORRIED: CT scan Dangers [Re: SumpChump]
JohnnyJohnson Online   content


Registered: 10/22/09
Posts: 2765
Loc: Wet side WA
I've had no less than 8 CT scans and three of them in the last three years have been full scans. Its going to test your patients more than hurt compared to what their looking for the risk is zero.


Edited by JohnnyJohnson (01/22/18 06:01 PM)
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#4643240 - 01/22/18 06:16 PM Re: WORRIED: CT scan Dangers [Re: SumpChump]
Bandito440 Online   content


Registered: 02/13/12
Posts: 3854
Loc: NEUS
Okay, we can examine this with data rather than internet sensationalism.

What is a “nearly FULL body CT scan”? What exactly does the doc want imaging of? This will help us determine the dosage of radiation you’ll be getting. It’ll also be helpful to know what equipment is being used - call the provider and ask.

What was the justification for “nearly FULL body” if the aorta is the concern? Why were you at a cardiologist in the first place?

What contrast is going to be used, and how much?

Let’s dial back on the massives and whammies until we can figure out what’s actually happening.
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#4643267 - 01/22/18 06:44 PM Re: WORRIED: CT scan Dangers [Re: SumpChump]
Mr Nice Offline


Registered: 09/12/04
Posts: 21202
Loc: Orlando, FL
Stop being a chicken, CT scans are safe.

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#4643302 - 01/22/18 07:09 PM Re: WORRIED: CT scan Dangers [Re: Mr Nice]
Bandito440 Online   content


Registered: 02/13/12
Posts: 3854
Loc: NEUS
Originally Posted By: Mr Nice
Stop being a chicken, CT scans are safe.

Well, let’s not engage in false dichotomy. It’s neither completely safe nor dangerous. He’s probably getting somewhere in the range of 5 - 15 mSv of ionizing radiation. That’s generally safe, but not without risk. It’s enough risk to require justification.
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#4643303 - 01/22/18 07:10 PM Re: WORRIED: CT scan Dangers [Re: SumpChump]
Leo99 Offline


Registered: 03/30/14
Posts: 3052
Loc: NJ
I had a cancer scare a few years ago. CT scans, PET scans, MRI. I finally got into a fight with a doctor and stopped the scans.

Doctors practice defensive medicine. If the chances are 1 in 100 there's a problem, are you willing to roll the dice?
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#4643321 - 01/22/18 07:20 PM Re: WORRIED: CT scan Dangers [Re: SumpChump]
Dallas69 Online   content


Registered: 02/11/14
Posts: 1664
Loc: Texas
Don't get all worked up .
Why don't you ask your doc about the risks?
You don't get massive amounts from a scan.
I've had over 20 in the last 10 yrs and no ill effects.
The first thing my Oncologist told me was don't read the internet.
It will just scare you.
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#4643348 - 01/22/18 07:46 PM Re: WORRIED: CT scan Dangers [Re: SumpChump]
CourierDriver Offline


Registered: 12/27/09
Posts: 4952
Loc: Tn.
Originally Posted By: SumpChump
Family history of blood pressure related Aortic problems. I have no high BP but cardiologist wants a nearly FULL body CT scan. My understanding is that it is many many times the radiation of a traditional Xray and if they use an ECG (heart rythm synced photographing method) that slows the process to prevent motion blur on image and the XRay exposure is significantly more than even a regular CT scan. Significantly more than a Typical CT. Yikes! I'm only 42 ... doc says CT exposure is overhyped...but I want to get 40more years out of these internal organs such an pancreas, after the CT whereas most of his patients are already only 7-10 years from "it dont matter anymore".
And then there is the kidney damaging iodine based contrast they inject.

Hi, my husband enjoys this forum and I am a CT and MR tech so he thought maybe I could be of help. Sounds like he ordered a heart study but if you know the exact name of the test that would be helpful. If he is ordering a cardiac score or heart function, yes some radiation is involved because CT is a different type of x-ray and x-rays are radiation. However, unless you have multiple CT's a single scan of this type does not pose a significant threat. The only contraindications to our contrast are poor kidney function, indicated by an elevated creatinine (lab value), or a previous reaction. All facilities have a screening form they use to be sure you have no contraindications to the contrast. If you have no symptoms depending on family history sometimes an echocardiogram, which is an ultrasound of the heart, is useful. However, many cardiologists feel they get more information from a CT. Not all facilities do MR of the heart but an MR (in the big magnet) does not involve radiation. So, you do have some options, and you might want to seek a second opinion. Remember it is your insurance and/ or your money not to mention your body, so any doctor worth his salt welcomes questions and the desire for a second opinion.

Worried here fellas. Rock and a hard place...

Do i get a baseline image of my body which "may" reveal things to watch at the expense of a gauranteed massive radiation exposure and kidney whammy via the contrast?
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