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CT Scanners Under Scrutiny

Audio

Aired 12/8/09

Hospitals in San Diego are taking a closer look at using a particular type of CT imaging on stroke patients. Recently, two hospitals in Los Angeles accidentally exposed patients to overdoses of radiation from CT scanners.

— Hospitals in San Diego are taking a closer look at using a particular type of CT imaging on stroke patients. Recently, two hospitals in Los Angeles accidentally exposed patients to overdoses of radiation from CT scanners.

A number of hospitals in San Diego County use CT scanners to help diagnose stroke patients. UCSD Medical Center in Hillcrest began using the machine earlier this year.

UCSD Radiologist John Renner says his hospital has done the stroke brain scan on four patients. He says UCSD stopped after hearing what happened in Los Angeles.

"There are other ways of doing this, one being MRI, magnetic resonance imaging," Dr. Renner says. "The trouble is MRI is not available 24/7, and stroke patients need to be imaged as soon as they hit the door."

Scripps Health also uses the CT scanner on stroke patients. Scripps officials say there are safeguards to prevent patients from being exposed to too much radiation.

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