Friday, April 06, 2012

Dosimetry of a cone-beam computed tomography machine compared with a digital x-ray machine in orthodontic imaging

Always use the lowest dosage possible to achieve the necessary imaging. MJ

American Journal of Orthodontics & Dentofacial Orthopedics
Volume 141, Issue 4 , Pages 436-443, April 2012

Introduction

Cone-beam computed tomography (CBCT) has become a routine imaging modality for many orthodontic clinics. However, questions remain about the amount of radiation patients are exposed to during the scans. This study determined the amounts of radiation potentially absorbed by a patient during orthodontic imaging with a CBCT machine with various scan settings compared with a conventional 2-dimensional digital x-ray machine.

Methods

The radiation exposures delivered by a next generation i-CAT CBCT machine (Imaging Sciences International, Hatfield, Pa) at various scan settings and orthopantomograph OP100/OC100 digital x-ray machine (Instrumentarium Dental, Tuusula, Finland) during panoramic and cephalometric radiography were recorded using thermoluminescent dosimeters placed inside a head and neck phantom. The manufacturer-recommended settings for an average adult male were used for both types of machines. Effective doses were calculated using the tissue-weighting factors recommended by the 2007 International Commission on Radiological Protection.

Results

The effective doses at various voxel sizes and field of view settings ranged from 64.7 to 69.2 μSv for standard resolution CBCT scans (scan time 8.9 s) and 127.3 to 131.3 μSv for high resolution full field of view scans (scan time 17.8 s), and measured 134.2 μSv for a high-resolution landscape scan with a voxel size as would be used for SureSmile (OraMetrix, Richardson, Tex) therapy (scan time 26.9 s). The effective doses for digital panoramic and lateral cephalometric radiographs measured 21.5 and 4.5 μSv, respectively.

Conclusions

CBCT, although providing additional diagnostic and therapeutic benefits, also exposes patients to higher levels of radiation than conventional digital radiography.

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