By Joe Messa
Medical malpractice lawyers report that, according to researchers, children who undergo CT scans of the head may be at an increased risk of developing brain cancer or leukemia later in life. Although the risk is small— about one case in 10,000 scans of the head— the study shows multiple CT scans could triple the risk of developing brain cancer and leukemia. The study examined medical history of 180,000 patients under age 22 who had CT scans between 1985 and 2002. Of those patients, seventy-four developed leukemia and 135 developed brain cancer.
Researchers point out that children are more sensitive to radiation and say that parents should try to limit risk factors for their child. Parents should ask their doctor if the procedure is necessary or if alternative tests can be done to get the required information to avoid using radiation. Other tests could include an ultrasound or an MRI. Additionally, experts want parents to keep track of the tests done and the radiation levels used so they can advise their child’s future doctors of prior testing.
Radiation exposure can be harmful to children, especially when a child undergoes multiple tests. The American College of Radiology recommends that parents talk to their child’s pediatrician or medical provider ordering the CT scan and ask a few questions.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has also taken an interest in risks of injuries to children as a result of diagnostic testing. Recently, the organization asked device makers to think about the safety of pediatric patients when using existing machines and designing new ones. The companies should ensure children are not exposed to more radiation than necessary when having X-rays or CT scans. Device manufacturers who are unable to demonstrate that their equipment is safe for children will be required to label those machines.
Diagnosing and timely treating brain cancer or leukemia is extremely important in order to increase the likelihood of survival. Typically, brain cancer is diagnosed with a neurological examination, brain scans and/or an analysis of the brain tissue. Cancer may be treated with surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy, depending on the type and severity of the tumor.
An experienced and qualified team of medical professionals should always oversee the treatment of any type of cancer, including brain cancer or leukemia since failure to diagnose or treat cancer can result in serious permanent injuries including loss of vision, hearing impairment, permanent brain injury or death. Brain cancer can also metastasize, or spread, throughout the central nervous system which includes the brain and spinal cord. In rare cases, brain cancer will also spread to other parts of the body. If you feel that you are not receiving appropriate care for a brain cancer, leukemia or any other type of cancer, you should immediately seek a second opinion from a qualified physician.
The Philadelphia medical malpractice lawyers at Messa & Associates are experienced at handling cases involving medical malpractice cases resulting from delayed and failure to diagnose cancer. Our extremely skilled team of medical malpractice lawyers and medical experts are dedicated to ensuring you receive proper compensation for your personal injuries. If you or a loved one has suffered personal injuries as a result of a medical error in failing to diagnose or treat leukemia, brain cancer or any other type of negligent care received by a medical provider, contact the medical malpractice lawyers of Messa & Associates for a free consultation. Call toll free at 1-877-MessaLaw, or submit a free online inquiry.
Joseph L. Messa, Jr. is the founding partner of Messa & Associates, P.C. He is an AV-rated attorney (highest rating available), listed in the Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers. Read More