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Ionising radiation exposure from medical imaging – A review of Patient's (un) awareness

Ribeiro, A, Husson, O, Drey, N. ORCID: 0000-0003-0752-9049 , Murray, I, May, K, Thurston, J & Oyen, W (2019). Ionising radiation exposure from medical imaging – A review of Patient's (un) awareness. Radiography, doi: 10.1016/j.radi.2019.10.002


Introduction: Medical imaging is the main source of artificial radiation exposure. Evidence, however, suggests that patients are poorly informed about radiation exposure when attending diagnostic scans. This review provides an overview of published literature with a focus on nuclear medicine patients on the level of awareness of radiation exposure from diagnostic imaging. Methods: A review of available literature on awareness, knowledge and perception of ionising radiation in medical imaging was conducted. Articles that met the inclusion criteria were subjected to critical appraisal using the Mixed Methods Appraisal Tool. Results: 140 articles identified and screened for eligibility, 24 critically assessed and 4 studies included in synthesis. All studies demonstrated that patients were generally lacking awareness about radiation exposure and highlighted a lack of communication between healthcare professionals and patients with respect to radiation exposure. Conclusion: Studies demonstrate a need to better inform patients about their radiation exposure, and further studies focusing on nuclear medicine patients are particularly warranted. Implications for practice: Adequate and accurate information is crucial to ensure the principle of informed consent is present.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2019 The College of Radiographers. Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (
Subjects: R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences > Nursing
Text - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives.

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