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Radiation doses from common x-rays

MagazineOctober 1993 (Vol. 4 Issue 7)Radiation doses from common x-rays

Here is a list of the most common x-rays

Here is a list of the most common x-rays. It includes the average percentage of particular types make up of all x-rays ie, dental x-rays account for one quarter of all x-rays done. It also shows how much typical background radiation is contained in a single x-ray. For instance a single dental x-ray exposes you in an instant to the equivalent of three days' worth of background radiation.

Examination Radiation Equivalent % all x-rays Dose (milliSieverts)Dental 3 days 25 20

Limbs and joints 16 days 25 100

Chest 8 days 24 50

Spine 1 year 7 2200

(lumbar spine) 5 months 900

(thoracic spine)

Skull 1 month 5.6 200

Stomach & intestines 1.7 years 2.5 3800

(barium meal) 3.5 years 700

(barium enema)

Abdomen 8 months 2.9 1400

Pelvis 7 months 2.9 1200

Urinary system 2 years 1.3 4400


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