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New European project aims to protect patients and clinicians from low-dose radiation exposure

por Lauren Dubinsky, Senior Reporter | October 24, 2017
CT European News Risk Management X-Ray
Its recommendations may
change regulation
The European Institute for Biomedical Imaging Research launched a four-year project in June to protect patients and health care professionals from low-dose radiation exposure.

The MEDIRAD project, which is being funded by the Euratom research and training program, comprises a consortium of 33 partners from 14 European countries.

Although vendors have made improvements to their diagnostic and treatment technologies, the use of ionizing radiation in medicine is steadily increasing. MEDIRAD is working to curb that, as well as the resultant health risks.
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The project involves three major operational objectives — to improve organ dose estimation and registration, evaluate and understand the cardiovascular effects of radiotherapy for breast cancer and pediatric cancer risks from CT exams and to develop recommendations to protect patients, staff and the general public.

"We will also organize two dissemination seminars to present the MEDIRAD recommendations to the medical and research communities and competent authorities, and we will facilitate consensus building,” Elisabeth Cardis, scientific coordinator of the project, told HCB News.

The recommendations will be developed for all stakeholders involved in medical radiation protection, including radiologists, nuclear medicine physicians, radiotherapists, radiographers and medical physicists.

"Usually, these highly specialized professionals carefully follow scientific advances, and I am confident they will pick the recommendations up," said Guy Frija, clinical coordinator of the project and professor at the Universite Paris Descartes.

MEDIRAD expects the European Commission to consider making regulatory changes based on the recommendations. The Euratom research and training program is also expected to fund new research programs.

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