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Medicine Summaries
Disease Diagnosis

Medical Imaging Tools Compared
X-Ray vs. CAT Scan vs. MRI

by Vaughn Aubuchon

Here is a summary of the main medical imaging tools that doctors use to look inside the human body.
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NEWS
Aug. 31, 2015
Children's Hospitals Cut Down on CT Scans to Prevent Cancer

We Are Giving Ourselves Cancer
... NY Times, Jan. 30, 2014
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Are CAT scans UNNECESSARY?
Oftentimes, yes.

The use of CAT scans is becoming far more common, without regard for the long-term effects, especially on children.

My grandson recently strained his neck in PE class. He was immediately given a CAT scan. I believe that ANY OTHER tool would have been preferable, avoiding massive radiation to the pituitary and thyroid glands. For years, we have known that x-rays cause cancer. How many years will it take to realize the effects of a technique that is equivalent to 100 to 1,000 x-rays, given ALL AT ONCE? 30 or 40 years.
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One "end-of-days" scenario involves a gamma-ray burst from outer space. No need to wait. Just go get a CAT scan. The evil of their convenience to physicians far outweighs their long-term threat. The doctor will have been served in the short term, but when the patient gets cancer, the doctor will be long gone.
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300

140


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Diagnostic Imaging Tools
Compared

Sonogram

 

X-Ray
CAT Scan/
CT Scan
MRI

Approx.
Date

1962
1896
1972
1977

Mode of
Operation

Ultrasonic
Audio Waves
Gamma rays
Gamma rays
Radio Frequency
Waves

Ionizing
radiation?

No
YES
YES
No

Typical
Radiation
Dose

-
1 chest x-ray
100 - 1000
chest x-rays
-

Resolution

Poor
Fair
Excellent
Excellent

Safety

Safe
Fairly Safe
Extremely
Dangerous,
esp. for children
Metal can become a missile.
Dangerous dyes are used - gadolinium

Manufacturer

GE
GE
GE, Siemens
GE, Siemens

Cost

Low
Low
High
Highest

110 - 500

90

90

90

120

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Medical Imaging Notes

1. CUMULATIVE - Ionizing radiation damage is CUMULATIVE. There is no "threshold" at which damage occurs. Scientists now concede that all radiation is dangerous.

2. DNA ALTERATION - Ionizing radiation can alter and destroy DNA and RNA, resulting in cancer many years later.

3. TIMEFRAME - Just as it took decades to establish that asbestos caused mesothelioma, it will take decades to positively establish that CAT scans induce MANY cancers.

4. CHILDREN - Children are far more sensitive to genetic and tissue damage, due to rapidly dividing cells. Techniques other than CAT scans are MORALLY preferred, if at all possible.

5. MODALITY - CAT scans cause more damage than any other medical diagnosis tool. This damage is hidden, and cannot be seen.

6. EXPEDIENCE - CASUAL ARROGANCE - Many doctors don't care about the long-term effects. Their interest is in covering their a** regarding the current situation. Since CAT scans provide very high resolution, there is a HIGH BIAS to always use them. Doctors are unconcerned what happens to the patient 40 years later - the doctor will be long gone. IN MOST CASES, an MRI is just as good, and far less dangerous. But arrogant physicians just don't care.

7. VARIATION - The radiation used in CAT Scans has been measured, and varies by a factor of 6.

8. MEASUREMENT - Radiation dose from CAT Scans is NOT EVEN measured during most scans. NOT EVEN MEASURED, even though it is massive and variable.

9. RECORD KEEPING - Databases that keep track of previous CT scans, are not common. It is very important to keep track of how many scans the patient has had, so that the cause of their future cancers can be known.


Glossary

CAT Scan

Computer Axial Tomography - same as CT scan

CT Scan

Computer Tomography Scan - same as CAT scan - Computer Aided Tomagraphy

MRI

Magnetic Resonance Imaging

80

350 - 450


Disclaimer: The above data was compiled from the net.
Please contact me if you find any errors.

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This Vaughns Medical Imaging Tools Comparison
page was last updated on 2015-09-05.