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Point and Counterpoint |

COUNTERPOINT: Should Radiation Dose From CT Scans Be a Factor in Patient Care? NoRadiation Dose a Factor in Patient Care? No

Mohan Doss, PhD
Author and Funding Information

From the Department of Diagnostic Imaging, Fox Chase Cancer Center.

CORRESPONDENCE TO: Mohan Doss, PhD, Department of Diagnostic Imaging, Fox Chase Cancer Center, 333 Cottman Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19111; e-mail: mohan.doss@fccc.edu


FINANCIAL/NONFINANCIAL DISCLOSURES: The author has reported to CHEST that no potential conflicts of interest exist with any companies/organizations whose products or services may be discussed in this article.

Reproduction of this article is prohibited without written permission from the American College of Chest Physicians. See online for more details.


Chest. 2015;147(4):874-877. doi:10.1378/chest.14-3022
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There is considerable disagreement in the scientific community on the carcinogenicity of low-dose radiation (LDR). Since the 1950s, international advisory bodies have consistently recommended using the linear no-threshold (LNT) model to extrapolate the high-dose cancer risks to low doses as a conservative approach to radiation safety, implying that LDR would increase the cancer risk. Hence, it is generally considered prudent to try to reduce the radiation dose from CT scans to reduce patients’ cancer risk. The entire radiologic community has embarked on efforts to reduce the radiation dose from CT scans. Are these LDR carcinogenic concerns and CT scan dose-reduction efforts justified? The answer to the question depends on (1) whether LDR is indeed carcinogenic, and (2) whether the CT scan dose-reduction efforts are likely to result in improved patient health. These two questions will be examined in some detail now to answer the question “Should radiation dose from CT scans be a factor in patient care?”

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