What Are the Disadvantages of X-Rays?

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The main disadvantage of X-rays is radiation exposure due to diagnostic tests that use this technique for imaging purposes. Many precautions are taken when performing these tests, and patients are exposed to minimal radiation energy, states Merck Manuals. Nevertheless, there are risks for cancer with computed tomography (CT) scans, which also use X-rays.

Radiation exposure is higher if patients require multiple X-ray imaging tests, but the amounts received are still low. However this imaging test is not used for pregnant patients if an abdominal imaging exam is necessary.

A CT scan also uses X-rays, but a higher dose is needed when compared to X-the conventional ray test. Using CT scan for different parts of the body multiple times can affect the lifetime risk for cancer, notes Radiology Info. For example, multiple CT scans of the abdomen and pelvis region with or without contrast can have a moderate lifetime risk for fatal cancer. The risk is higher in children with this imaging procedure, relates ABC News.