Child-sized radiation

By Dr. Elizabeth Ey, Medical Director of Radiology

Do you know enough about radiation safety for your child?  When an X-ray, CT scan or any other radiation emitting test is ordered, do you ask your physician if the size of your child is considered in the settings of the equipment?

At Dayton Children’s, we are already aware of this risk for your child as we specialize in caring for children.

  • Our equipment is specially purchased and calibrated for children
  • Our team members are all trained to use the smallest radiation dose that will provide a proper image for our radiologists (the physicians that interpret the images)
  • Our radiologists and technologists were “early adopters” of the “Image Gently” program and have signed the Image Gently pledge.   Click here for more “Image Gently” information

Recently the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) took steps that directly impact all manufacturers of imaging equipment.  The FDA has concerns that nearly 90% of all pediatric imaging is performed in general hospitals which may not have “child-sized” their equipment and radiation doses.  Under the FDA’s proposal, new medical imaging devices would have to come with dose settings and instructions for children of different ages and sizes — or be labeled “Not for pediatric use”.

While the recommendations by the FDA are very important, you should make sure that your child is currently being exposed to the least amount of necessary radiation.  To do this, you can:

  • Keep a list of your child’s medical scans.
  • Ask the doctor who orders a scan how it will improve the child’s care and whether there are alternatives, such as MRI or ultrasound, that don’t use radiation.
  • Ask the imaging facility whether it uses reduced radiation techniques and equipment for children.


At Dayton Children’s,  we are prepared to discuss your child’s imaging history and imaging needs.  For additional information, please view this Image Gently video.

About Dr. Ey

Dr. Ey is medical director for the department of medical imaging at Dayton Children’s and also performs angiography and interventional studies such as drainages, biopsies and intraoperative image guidance. Dr. Ey is an assistant clinical professor at the Wright State University Boonshoft School of Medicine.

The department of pediatric radiology, medical imaging and nuclear medicine at Dayton Children’s offers a full spectrum of diagnostic imaging for patients. For more information on the department, visit the pediatric radiology and medical imaging main page.

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