AHRA 2013: Providing Dose Reduction to the Patients Who Need it Most
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We are half way through 2013 and radiation dose reduction in medical imaging continues to be one of the most important issues the industry faces. Patients are our primary focus and we at Carestream, as I’m sure many other providers and medical professionals, have been maintaining our focus of putting patients first. The best way to do this is to focus on their safety and provide them with the best and safest care possible.
In an article from DOTMed that focused on dose reduction, the trends among the larger medical imaging companies showed that these providers are producing the technologies that shrink the dose delivered to patients. At Carestream, our R&D team has been focused on delivering dose reduction to patients, specifically pediatric patients, since they are a category more susceptible to the side effects that a radiation overdose can cause.
At ECR this year, our R&D scientist, Sam Richard, Ph.D., presented on reducing dose when capturing pediatric images. The research focused on optimizing image quality across a wide range of pediatric patient sizes. His team’s study concluded that to get the best image quality and lowest dose, pediatric patient size should be taken into account when selecting the kVp. To demonstrate this, a white paper published earlier this year presented principles in X-Ray procedures that should be followed throughout the imaging process to provide safe imaging practices to pediatric patients.
Now that we’re approaching July, we’re proud to announce that the DRX 2530C Detector has officially received FDA clearance. The wireless DR detector offers low dose X-ray exams for pediatric, orthopaedic, and general radiology applications without compromising the image quality of the exam. The smaller detector, which measures 25 cm x 30 cm, can provide better care for premature babies and infants in the pediatric ICU. The high detective quantum efficiency (DQE) of the cesium iodide detector can lead to lower dose than CR cassettes or gadolinium scintillator detectors and fits easily into the x-ray tray of neonatal incubators.
A product such as the DRX 2530C, which will begin shipping in the third quarter of 2013, addresses the dose reduction trend that is immersed throughout our industry, but we won’t, and can’t, stop here. While much of the dose reduction focus is aim toward the pediatric patients, it is an issue that pertains to everyone who has a medical imaging exam—especially those who may be prone to having these exams more often than others. The key will be to ensure that we continue to invest in bringing more of these products and services to market that can lead to not only better patient care, but safer care too.