Several modalities are currently utilized for diagnosis and therapy, by appropriate application of x-rays. In diagnostic radiology, interventional radiology, radiotherapy, interventional cardiology, nuclear medicine and other specialties radiation protection of a pregnant woman as a patient, as well as a member of the operating personnel, is of outmost importance. Based on radiation risk, the termination of pregnancy is not justified if foetal doses are below 100 mGy. For foetal doses between 100 and 500 mGy, a decision is reached on a case by case basis. In Diagnostic Radiology, when a pregnant patient takes an abdomen CT, then an estimation of the foetus' dose is necessary. However, it is extremely rare for the dose to be high enough to justify an abortion. Radiographs of the chest and extremities can be done at any period of pregnancy, provided that the equipment is functioning properly. Usually, the radiation risk is lower than the risk of not undergoing a radiological examination. Radiation exposure in uterus from diagnostic radiological examinations is unlikely to result in any deleterious effect on the child, but the possibility of a radiation-induced effect can not be entirely ruled out. The effects of exposure to radiation on the foetus depend on the time of exposure, the date of conception and the absorbed dose. Finally, a pregnant worker can continue working in an x-ray department, as long as there is reasonable assurance that the foetal dose can be kept below 1 mGy during the pregnancy. Nuclear Medicine diagnostic examinations using short-lived radionuclides can be used for pregnant patient. Irradiation of the foetus results from placental transfer and distribution of radiopharmaceuticals in the foetal tissues, as well as from external irradiation from radioactivity in the mother's organ and tissues. As a rule, a pregnant patient should not undergo therapy with radionuclide, unless it is crucial for her life. In Radiotherapy, the patient, treating oncologist, other team and family members should carefully discuss for the decision of abortion. Important factors must be considered such as the stage and aggressiveness of the tumour, the location of the tumour, the stage of pregnancy, various therapies etc.
7th International Conference of the Balkan Physical Union Organized by the Hellenic Physical Society with the Cooperation of the Physics Departments of Greek Universities
- Pub Date:
- January 2010
- X-ray imaging;
- radiation effects;
- Photon dosimetry: theory and algorithms;
- Biophysical mechanisms of interaction