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Family of Tot Sues over CT Scan Radiation Overexposure

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Los Angeles, CAA new and troubling issue emerging over CT brain scan and CT scan radiation has its roots in two recent events that were brought to the fore in the state of California. The issue, in a nutshell, is a nod to the fact that Americans are already receiving high levels of diagnostic radiation simply due to the prevalence, frequency and availability of diagnostic imaging in US clinics and hospitals.

The problem is if and when the imaging is done incorrectly. The resulting radiation exposure can be even higher.

On October 15th the New York Times reported on the admission by renowned Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles that it had mistakenly administered up to eight times the normal dose of radiation to a collection of stroke victims over an 18-month period. The hospital disclosed that 206 patients were affected.

In an unrelated case, a young boy who was brought to Mad River Community Hospital in Arcata was subjected to over an hour of CT scan radiation.

The normal amount of radiation—and the normal length of the procedure—is about two or three minutes. According to a state investigation, technician Raven Knickerbocker activated the scan 151 times in the same area, whereas a normal scan involves about 25 images. The event is even more of a concern given that a child is more sensitive to the effects of diagnostic radiation, than an adult.

Knickerbocker was fired from the hospital, and is contesting the revocation of her license.

At Cedars Sinai, the radiation overdoses were discovered after a patient complained of patchy hair loss. An investigation revealed the radiation overdoses to patients who underwent CT brain perfusion scans, a type of imaging "used in certain urgent situations—such as a suspected stroke—to identify the extent of possible blood flow problems in the brain," the hospital said in a statement. The median age of the overdose victims in that particular facility was 70.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has alerted all medical facilities that employ CT scan diagnostic imaging. The agency is asking all facilities to review their procedures.

It should be noted that the Mad River Hospital, which has 78 beds, did not report the radiation overdose to young Jacoby Roth, who is 2 ½. State officials only became aware of the incident after the boy's parents became suspicious and came forward. The family has launched a lawsuit against the hospital and the technician involved. Effects of radiation can take years to emerge. One radiation expert retained by the family predicted the child would develop cataracts within five years.

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READER COMMENTS

Posted by

on
Sounds like there is a three ring circus. Let me explain my theory. Ms. K didn't act on behalf of her patient, the hospital did not upgrade proper pediatric protocol(because the machine used, I believe was a Picker PQS model). And they lay blame at her feet alone. The protocols on that machine are using maximum exposure factors to keep them from running until you set them up. In other words, they set her up for failure. The machines of this type had to cool 20-30 seconds between exposures because they were using the maximums. I am guessing it was a single slice scanner, incapable of covering areas of a child size at 1-millimeter increments. which is why it took so long coupled with the fact it was set on high. I call this a slow burn. it would be like cutting your grass on the lowest setting and only moving 1 inch every 2 minutes....just a visual. not to scale. ok onward. the protocol should have been set up by the hospital. However, it does not release her from liability. She should have stopped and looked after the scanner stopped and checked her factors(exposure time, KvP, mAs, slice thickness and interval. she was not in helical mode, because back then more detail was delivered by doing an axial scan.Again just my theory by looking at the available information. by the way, 151 times divided by 10 is 15.1 cm (the average size of a child's head) so I gathered she was using 1 mm collimation. furthermore, the hospital got away with one in scrapping the machine in question before it was inspected. which left only the scan after product: scan images, start time and end. Had they looked I'm sure they would have found both the hospital and her to be negligent, not just Ms. K. alone. I used this brand and maybe the same model. it was maxed out on technique and would not expose in serial mode unless the techniques were augmented to work without tube cooling interrupting imaging by having an inner scan delay....just my thoughts

Posted by

on
I am looking for a lawyer to file a lawsuit for a brain scanner that is reading my mind. people know everything I have in my mind. And I have loss memory from it. I hope to hear from you soon.

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