Positron Emission Tomography Centre

Radiation Safety

Radiation Safety

PET and CT imaging involve the use of ionising radiation. Each imaging examination uses relatively low amounts of radiation but it is still important to balance this exposure against the potential benefit of the test.

PET imaging involves the use of ionising radiation. Each imaging examination uses relatively low amounts of radiation but it is still important to balance this exposure against the potential benefit of the test.

PET-MRI scanners have the best PET detectors in modern imaging equipment. This means we are able to use lower doses of injected radiotracers.

With PET-MRI there is no CT component so the dose to the patients/participants is reduced as we are able to get the anatomical detail required for the investigations by using MRI (varying magnetic fields) rather than CT (x-rays).

Reducing radiation dose is important to all patients/ participants but especially useful in the paediatric population and people requiring serial imaging with long term conditions.

Staff carrying out regular PET-MRI scans are suitably trained and monitored to make sure they are not exposed to unacceptable amounts of radiation.

The risks of radiation from PET imaging can be compared to other sources of radiation, such as background levels in different parts of the country and the effects of air travel.

The PET Centre can provide support from a Medical Physics Expert to optimise your imaging protocol design and complete dose assessment for entry into the Integrated Research Applications System (IRAS).

Further information on radiation safety can be found on the Health Protection Agency website.