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Dose Reduction Success Stories

I want to share some exciting information concerning one of our client’s dose reduction successes. I recently completed an analysis of this site’s doses (Total CTDIvol) from 2013 through YTD 2019. This is interesting because during this time period the equipment did not change.

The chart below illustrates what can be accomplished using the ACR’s Dose Index Registry to lower doses over time. The blue column represents the baseline – the average Total CTDIvol for that RPID in 2013, the site’s first year it participated in the DIR. Each column to the right represents the average Total CTDIvol for each subsequent year for that RPID through Q3 2019.

Dose Reduction Successes: The first two sets of columns above show that this client, with our help, has reduced their average Total CTDIvol for their CT Chest studies in 2019 to less than 80% of what it was in 2013, and its average Total CTDIvol for their CT Brain w/o contrast studies in 2019 to about 60% of what they it was in 2013. The chart also shows that their average Total CTDIvol for their CT Neck, Aorta w/ Lower Extremity Angio, Lower Extremity w/o contrast, and IAC studies in 2019 are about 45%, 55%, 40%, and 50% lower, respectively, than they were in 2013. Overall, when reviewing the entirety of the work done at this site each year, the average Total CTDIvol per study in 2019 is about 75% of what it was in 2013.

This chart also illustrates the continuing focus this site placed on this project. Note that, with the exception of the CT Neck, most studies’ Total CTDIvol were reduced gradually. This is illustrative of the site’s continued and long term focus on dose reduction: The management and staff didn’t just look at the process as “one and done;” they looked at this as a long-term process, and continued to look for ways to optimize their doses.

In the end, this is their department’s success story. Using this information, the site is able to show that the radiology department is taking the lead on an important patient safety initiative, and get the recognition they deserve within their institution. Dose Registry Support’s role in this was not to do this work for them: Our role was to help staff understand the DIR, identify where the dose reduction opportunities were, and to point them in the right direction. At the end of the day, this process must be lead by the staff and management on site, working with their radiologists and medical physicists, in order to be successful. Without department/staff leadership, it can’t succeed.

If your site is struggling to use the DIR, Dose Registry Support Services can help. We can make the DIR easy and understandable, and do so at a very low cost. While nothing guarantees success – we are confident we can help those who are motivated and want to succeed.

Contact us for more information. If you are attending RSNA 2019 and would like to meet and discuss our services, we can do so.

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