FDA steps in on CT radiation overdoses

Patient Safety Monitor Insider

November 10, 2010

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), after investigating reports concerning computed tomography (CT) brain profusion scans accidently exposed patients to excess radiation in hospitals in California and Alabama, has identified steps to enhance safety of procedures involving CT scans.

The investigation discovered at least 385 patients received excess radiation from such scans in five California hospitals and one in Alabama. The FDA concluded that it is likely improper use of scanners, not a problem with the scanners themselves, resulted in the brain scan overdoses. The steps given were sent to Medical Imaging and Technology Alliance, the main distributor of CT machines. They include a console notification to alert the operator of a high dose of radiation and a separate user manual just on dosing.

Read the FDA news release.