Category: Radiology

Steven Greer MD: A discussion with Bill O’Reilly about radiation risks

A discussion with Bill O’Reilly about radiation risks from the Fukushima nuclear meltdowns and the fallout hitting the U.S. and entire globe.

Updated: February 28, 2012

A report on the handling of the Fukushima nuclear plant crisis confirmed what Dr. Greer first said last year: that the government and TEPCO were lying to the public and downplaying the risk, while also being incompetent in handling the meltdowns.

CT-scan screening for heart disease fails to show benefit

March 23, 2015- Interviewed by Steven E. Greer, MD

We interviewed the Principal Investigator of the PROMISE trial, Pamela Douglas, MD from Duke. Read more »

David Bahner, MD: Training non-radiologists to use ultrasound

Ultrasound imaging has many advantages over radiation emitting X-rays and CT scans. The recent publications on the risks of radiation exposure make the use of ultrasound more compelling. Moreover, expensive radiation-based imaging studies, and overusage of them, are one of the largest expenditures in the private and government healthcare budgets.

Dr. David Bahner, emergency medicine physician at The Ohio State University Medical Center runs a unique program that teaches medical students and residents how to operate portable ultrasounds for focused diagnostics in cases of trauma, hypotension, pelvic exams, pregnancy, and to assist interventional procedures.

In Part 1, Dr. Bahner gives an overview of point of care portable ultrasound:

In part 2, Dr. Bahner discusses the training program and how other specialties have adopted ultrasound training


Mark G. McKenney, M.D.: Advances in trauma care

Tremendous advances have been made over the last two decades in the way that trauma patients are handled in the OR and ICU. The ongoing wars have contributed much. Survival rates in the theater are now approaching 90%, compared to 70% decades ago. Mark G. McKenney, M.D., Chief of Trauma at the University of Miami and Co-Director of the Ryder Trauma Center discusses some of the most important developments in sepsis care, artery embolization, fluid resuscitation, and medical imaging using portable ultrasound.


David Kallmes, MD: Is vertebroplasty futile?


Two important government-funded clinical trials on vertobroplasty were published today in The New England Journal of Medicine. Both trials showed that the practice of injecting cement into spinal compression fractures of the elderly do not help alleviate pain and disability better than control sham procedures. However, as with most spine trials, there is plenty of room to dice the data and find flaws in the conclusions.

The relevance to investors is that vertebroplasty is the direct competitor to Medtronic’s Kyphon balloon kyphoplasty device. On one hand, the two negative studies in the NEJM could cast doubt of the concept of repairing fractured osteoporotic spines, and be a negative for MDT as well. On the other hand, there is a good argument that kyphoplasty is significantly different from vertebroplasty and that the negative studies will drive more cases to be preformed using kyphoplasty.

We interviewed the principle investigator of the US trial, Dr. David Kallmes of the Mayo Clinic.

Reza Fazel, MD: Radiation exposure from medical imaging studies

Produced and interviewed by Steven Greer, MD

Dr. Reza Fazel of Emory discusses his NEJM paper that determined the level of radiation exposure to patients undergoing routine medical imaging studies. They assessed nearly a million patients from a private insurance database and determined that millions of Americans receive significant and unsafe levels of ionizing radiation from tests such as nuclear stress tests and CT scans.

Courtney Coursey, MD: The utility of pre-op CT scans in rule out appy

Produced and interviewed by Steven Greer, MD

The HCC has reported in a series of stories about the hazards of radiation exposure from medical imaging and cardiology tests. Recently, portable ultrasound technology was featured on The HCC as a non-radiation alternative.

A February original paper in the journal “Radiology” looked retrospectively at the preoperative use of abdominal CT scans to diagnose appendicitis, or to correctly diagnose other pain-inducing ailments and prevent unnecessary appendectomies. Are pre-op CT scans to “rule out appy” useless, harmful, and done for legal reasons, or do certain groups benefit?

We interviewed the lead author, Courtney Coursey, now at Emory.

Bruce Hillman, MD: Medical imaging expenditure growth

July 4, 2010

Produced and interviewed by Steven Greer, MD

Bruce Hillman, MD, Editor-in-Chief of The Journal of the American College of Radiology (JACR) discusses why medical imaging expenditures have skyrocketed and suggests some solutions to the problem.

James Evans, MD, PhD: Genetic testing for breast cancer screening

With advances in genetic testing to determine high-risk mutations such as BRCA, can genetic tests available now help determine which women do not need routine mammography versus those who need early and aggressive screening? James Evans, MD, PhD, Editor-in-Chief of the journal “Genetics in Medicine” discusses the matter.

Update: U.S. Radiation levels from Japan

May 1, 2011

The radiation fallout levels in the U.S. from the Japan Fukushima reactors remain low. The EPA runs a national RadNet system that collects radiation samples from air, water, milk and other sources. In addition, most states (e.g. Maryland) have independent collection systems, as do nuclear regulatory agencies.

We spoke with Clifford S. Mitchell, MD, MPH, of the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.

The data are collected by measuring the activity level of the disintegrating isotopes. Each isotope emits a unique spectrum of energy, so the type of radiation, as well as total energy is measurable in picocuries (pCi/m3). However, those measurements are not clinically relevant.

One needs to then estimate a clinical dosage, which depends on the length of exposure and route of ingestion (i.e. inhaled, drank, touched, etc). Sieverts (Sv), or millisieverts (mSv), are the units of dosage one needs in order to compare fallout to other types of radiation, such as CT scans or X-rays. We do not have estimates for the mSv dose data.

The encouraging aspects of the data collected so far are that:

A) The total activity is not accumulating significantly

B)  The long-half-life, most deadly, isotopes such as cesium and plutonium, are not yet detected, for the most part, in mainland U.S. Hawaii does have detectable levels of some of the more concerning isotopes, as does California rain water measurements (Te-132).

Given that I-131 has a short half-life of 8 days, one would not expect to see an accumulation of activity in pCi. However, a continued inhalation of low levels can translate into a greater dosage on terms of mSv.

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