Mohammed Sidi, Chukwuemeka H Elugwu



Background: Deterministic and stochastic effects deleterious side effects arising from the use of ionizing radiation in diagnostic radiology, radiation therapy, and nuclear medicine.  The breast is a radiosensitive organ that is often ‘shielded’ with a simple cotton gown when contiguous or fairly distant anatomical regions are imaged radiographically.


Objective: To quantify the amount of scattered radiation to breasts during x-ray and CT investigations with a view to finding evidence for apparel shielding during such procedures in the locality.



Thermoluminescent dosimeters were used to quantify scattered radiation dose in fifty patients each for computed tomography (CT) and computed radiography (CR). Absorbed dose (mGy) were subjected to statistical analysis. Central tendencies and dispersion were noted. Furthermore, a paired-sample t-test was done to test for statistically significant difference in mean absorbed dose by both breasts. Difference found justified the necessity for shielding during radiographic examinations.



Scattered radiation reached the breasts in both procedures, and with a range of 1.28 – 12.6 mGy (CT) and 1.02 – 3.63 mGy. There was enormous reduction in dose between unshielded and shielded breasts in CT (113 %) and CR (32.2 %), with the difference being statistically significant (p < 0.05),




Scattered radiation to the breasts were greatly and significantly reduced when shielding was applied. We strongly urge radiographers to practice shielding of contiguous and distant organs during procedures involving ionizing radiation.



Scattered radiation, computed tomography, computed radiography, head, lumbosacral spine, x-ray

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