Researchers in the radiation oncology department at UCLA’s Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center have received a $14 million grant to develop countermeasures that will help treat damage caused by radiological or nuclear threats such as a dirty bomb attack.
Radiation in any form brings risk. Medical radiation as a screening, diagnostic or treatment tool is designed with safeguards in mind to minimize the risk and maximize the benefit of the test or treatment. For instance, if a patient presents with a breast lump that can be felt but not viewed with mammography or ultrasound, medical professionals must employ the most appropriate diagnostic tools that identify potential cancer.
Some nuclear-based breast imaging exams may increase a woman’s risk of developing radiation-induced cancer, according to a special report appearing online and in the October issue of Radiology. However, the radiation dose and risk from mammography are very low.