Estimated fetal radiation dose from multislice CT studies

J. P. Felmlee, J. E. Gray, M. L. Leetzow, J. C. Price

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations


It is often necessary to estimate the dose of radiation to a fetus from a series of CT scans. To assist in making this process easier and more accurate, we measured fetal doses in an adult anthropomorphic phantom for four CT scanners: Picker 1200, Siemens DRH, GE 9800, and GE 8800. Measurements were made at four kilovoltages (100, 120, 130, and 140 kVp), for 2-, 5-, 8-, and 10-mm thicknesses, for two scanning angles (360° and 398°) and for two patient orientations (prone and supine). The fetal-dose estimates are based on the CT dose index measured by using a pencil ionization chamber at the center position of a 16-cm-diameter cylindrical phantom. Comparison with data from other investigators shows reasonable agreement when phantom differences, X-ray tube output, and equipment calibration are considered. The data presented here can be used to estimate fetal dose to within ±15% of the measured value for scans up to 40 cm from the fetus.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)185-190
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Roentgenology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1990

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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