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Anna asked...

Tags: radiotherapy

I have been trying for a long time without success to find out approximately how much radiation I got from a CT scan I had 17 years ago of my adrenal glands with and without contrast. The scan was only of my adrenal glands and not of my abdomen. It is very easy to find out approximately how much radiation you get from a CT scan of your liver or abdomen but I do not find anything of only the adrenal glands. The reason I am trying to find this out is because I am trying to calculate all CT scans, X-rays, bone scan etc. I have had during my lifetime. I would be so thankful if you could tell me approximately how much radiation I had from the CT scan of my adrenal glands.

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The Answer

The radiation quantity most relevant for assessing the risk of exposure from a CT scan is called the effective dose. The effective dose from diagnostic CT scans is estimated between 1-10 mSV (millisieverts).

The research shown that the effective dose for a CT scan to the adrenal glands is typically between 7-8 mSV.  This figure does not specify if the scan was performed with or without contrast. It is worth mentioning that the radiation doses from diagnosis CT scans varies from patient to patient. 

A particular radiation dose will depend on the size of the body part examined, scanner type and its software program as well the personal details of the patient (gender, age and weight). That is why the typical published values on this subject are an estimate and do not confirm the dose a particular patient received. 

Here are some reference links:

Radiation patient doses

Radiation

I would suggest to have a discussion with a radiologist or radiographer at the hospital where you had the scans and the x-rays done. They might hold an accurate data about your scanning history and the actual level of radiation delivered during the investigations. 

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