New CT rule-out examination cuts patient x-ray exposure

July 1, 2009
Diagnostic Imaging, Diagnostic Imaging Vol 31 No 7, Volume 31, Issue 7

High radiation exposure has been the bogeyman keeping the cardiac CT triple rule-out exam for chest pain from widespread application.

High radiation exposure has been the bogeyman keeping the cardiac CT triple rule-out exam for chest pain from widespread application. The use of radiation dose reduction techniques addresses that concern.

Dr. Kevin Takakuwa and colleagues at Thomas Jefferson University reviewed data from 267 consecutive patients who underwent triple rule-out cardiac CT angiography after presenting to the emergency roon with symptoms of acute coronary syndrome. Ninety-five patients underwent the triple rule-out CTA protocol with tube current modulation, and 172 did so without it. Investigators found that patients undergoing triple rule-out without tube current modulation received average effective radiation doses of 18 mSv. Those getting the exam with tube current modulation, however, had effective radiation doses reduced by more than 50% without image quality loss. Findings were published in the American Journal of Roentgenology (2009;192[4]:866-872).