The Risks of a CT Scan

As with any test that disease screening test, the risks of the full-body CT scan, (which includes exposure to ionising radiation, incorrect diagnosis, cost etc), need to be weighed against the benefit of identifying a disease such as a tumour at an early stage when it can still be treated. One of the main risks of a full body CT scan is the relatively high doses of radiation for instance conventional CT scanners expose patients to approximately 10 mSv of radiation. This radiation is about the same as 3 years worth of normal background radiation or over a hundred times that of a chest X-ray. Additional risks include the possible identification of incidental abnormalities that may lead to further unnecessary testing, which may include invasive procedures.