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What Imaging Test Do I Order? 

What Imaging Test Do I Order?

Chapter:
What Imaging Test Do I Order?
Author(s):

M. Angela O’Neal

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780190609917.003.0012
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date: 22 July 2017

The case illustrates how to approach imaging in pregnancy. Some basic principles of radiation exposure are reviewed. The effects of radiation are divided into either deterministic, dose-related, or stochastic, where exposure determines the probability of an outcome. Deterministic effects have a threshold below which the effect does not occur. The threshold may be small and may vary from person to person; whereas stochastic effects occur by chance and may occur without a threshold level. Cancer caused by radiation is an example of a stochastic effect. The overall safety of magnetic resonance imaging is discussed. Determining which imaging modality to order depends on the acuity of the situation and the information needed to know in order to adequately treat the mother.

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