Could use of a lead apron when X-rays are used diagnostically have negative consequences? Elizabeth Tracey reports


Lead aprons are no longer required for the vast majority of diagnostic imaging with X-rays, such as those your dentist might use. Mahadevappa Mahesh, a medical physics expert at Johns Hopkins, says using an apron might compromise the study.

Mahesh: The technology also has improved so much with the digital technology the system will automatically change the amount of radiation used based on what's in the back, so if we have a lead apron or a shield on the path the X-ray system will assume oh there is some thick body part let me radiate more.   :18

Anatomy may also play a role, Mahesh says.

Mahesh: Even though you place in the kids exactly where you think it is sometime explaining the young growing girls the ovaries are all over the place. There were a number of studies shown that so you're almost like a false comfort.  :11

Mahesh notes that flying in an airplane exposes people to as much radiation as many diagnostic studies. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.