The Food and Drug Administration said it will launch a radiation exposure-reduction initiative targeting CT, nuclear medicine and fluoroscopy imaging scans. Each of the technologies uses high doses of radiation and also expose patients to ionizing radiation, which can increase patients' lifetime cancer risks, according to FDA officials.
The agency's three-pronged initiative will require manufacturers to incorporate dosage safeguards into their machines, establish mandatory quality assurance practices to be incorporated into accreditation requirements for imaging providers, and set up a registry to capture dose information on a variety of imaging studies.
“The goal of the FDA's initiative is to support the benefits associated with medical imaging while minimizing the risks,” said Jeffrey Shuren, director of the agency's Center for Devices and Radiological Health, in a news release. The agency said it will also advocate for providers to adopt two radiation-protection principles: appropriate justification of prescribed radiation procedures and optimization of the radiation dose during each procedure.