Evaluation of an initiative to reduce radiation exposure from CT to children in a non-pediatric-focused facility

Einat Blumfield, Jonathan Zember, Mark Guelfguat, Amit Blumfield, Harold Goldman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


We would like to share our experience of reducing pediatric radiation exposure. Much of the recent literature regarding successes of reducing radiation exposure has come from dedicated children’s hospitals. Nonetheless, over the past two decades, there has been a considerable increase in CT imaging of children in the USA, predominantly in non-pediatric-focused facilities where the majority of children are treated. In our institution, two general hospitals with limited pediatric services, a dedicated initiative intended to reduce children’s exposure to CT radiation was started by pediatric radiologists in 2005. The initiative addressed multiple issues including eliminating multiphase studies, decreasing inappropriate scans, educating referring providers, training residents and technologists, replacing CT with ultrasound or MRI, and ensuring availability of pediatric radiologists for consultation. During the study period, the total number of CT scans decreased by 24 %. When accounting for the number of scans per visit to the emergency department (ED), the numbers of abdominal and head CT scans decreased by 37.2 and 35.2 %, respectively. For abdominal scans, the average number of phases per scan decreased from 1.70 to 1.04. Upon surveying the pediatric ED staff, it was revealed that the most influential factors on ordering of scans were daily communication with pediatric radiologists, followed by journal articles and lectures by pediatric radiologists. We concluded that a non-pediatric-focused facility can achieve dramatic reduction in CT radiation exposure to children; however, this is most effectively achieved through a dedicated, multidisciplinary process led by pediatric radiologists.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)631-641
Number of pages11
JournalEmergency Radiology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1 2015


  • Emergency department
  • Image Gently
  • Pediatric radiology
  • Radiation reduction
  • Utilization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency Medicine
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


Dive into the research topics of 'Evaluation of an initiative to reduce radiation exposure from CT to children in a non-pediatric-focused facility'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this