Radiation exposure to the child during cardiac catheterization.
Few data are available regarding radiation exposure to children during cardiac catheterization. Using lithium fluoride thermoluminescent dosimeters, radiation exposure was measured during precatheterization chest roentgenography, fluoroscopy (hemodynamic assessment phase of catheterization) and cineangiography in 30 infants and children, ages 3 days to 21 years. Dosimeters were placed over the eyes, thyroid, anterior chest, posterior chest, anterior abdomen, posterior abdomen and gonads. Average absorbed chest doses were 24.5 mR during chest roentgenography, 5810 mR during catheterization fluoroscopy and 1592 mR during cineangiography. During the complete catheterization, average doses were 26 mR to the eyes, 431 mR to the thyroid area, 150 mR to the abdomen and 11 mR to the gonads. Radiation exposure during pediatric cardiac catheterization is low to the eyes and gonads but high to the chest and thyroid area. To decrease radiation dosage we suggest (1) low pulse-rate fluoroscopy; (2) substitution of contrast echocardiography for cineangiography; (3) large-plate abdominal/gonadal shielding; (4) a selective shield for thyroid area; (5) a very small field during catheter manipulation. Minimum radiation consistent with accurate diagnosis is optimal; however, erroneous or incomplete diagnosis is more dangerous than radiation-related hazards.
- Copyright © 1981 by American Heart Association