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Kids often exposed to imaging procedures that utilise radiation: Study

Kids are frequently exposed to imaging procedures which utilise radiation, according to a US study conducted by researchers at University of Michigan.

For the study, researchers identified 355,088 children under the age of 18 in five large US health care markets to analyse how often the imaging procedures such as x-rays and CT-scans are used.

The study revealed that over 400,000 imaging procedures were conducted in just 3 years, with 42.5% of the children undergoing at least one of these procedures and many of them receiving multiple tests.

An analysis of this data showed that the average child in the study population would receive approximately seven imaging procedures that utilise radiation by age 18.

The investigators recommended that each imaging procedure should be guided by the As Low As Reasonably Achievable (ALARA) principle, which advises minimising the radiation doses while still acquiring sufficient clinical information.

Study author, Andrew Einstein said this study should not deter parents from imaging procedures that may provide clear benefit for their children.

"It should encourage discussions about the value of each imaging test that is ordered, recognizing that radiation exposure, even in small amounts, may not be risk free, " Einstein added.