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Radiology. 2004 Sep;232(3):701-7. Epub 2004 Jul 23.

Patient exposure and associated radiation risks from fluoroscopically guided vertebroplasty or kyphoplasty.

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Department of Medical Physics, University Hospital of Iraklion, University of Crete, Faculty of Medicine, PO Box 2208, 71003 Iraklion, Crete, Greece.



To derive normalized data for the estimation of effective, gonadal, and peak skin doses to patients undergoing vertebroplasty or kyphoplasty and to investigate the potential for cancer induction, genetic effects, and radiation-induced skin injury after such procedures.


Dose values normalized over dose-area product were determined for all radiosensitive organs and tissues by using a humanoid phantom and thermoluminescence dosimetry separately for anteroposterior and lateral projections. Measurements were obtained for treatments of the fifth, eighth, and 11th thoracic vertebrae and the first, third, and fifth lumbar vertebrae. Total fluoroscopy time and resultant dose-area product from each fluoroscopic exposure were monitored in 11 consecutive patients (seven women and four men) undergoing kyphoplasty. The age range of these patients was 41-78 years, and the mean age was 58 years.


Mean total fluoroscopy time for kyphoplasty was 10.1 minutes +/- 2.2 (standard deviation). Mean effective dose to patients from kyphoplasty was 8.5-12.7 mSv, and mean gonadal dose was 0.04-16.4 mGy, depending on the level of the treated vertebra. Skin injuries after kyphoplasty are improbable if source-to-skin distance is 35 cm or more; however, such injuries may occur if the total fluoroscopy time per projection is extended and/or the source-to-skin distance is less than 35 cm during the procedure.


Patient radiation exposure and associated risks from vertebroplasty or kyphoplasty may be considerable. Data obtained in the current study may be used to establish patient effective dose, gonadal dose, and entrance skin exposure, as well as associated risks, from these fluoroscopically guided surgical treatments of spinal disorders.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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