Review

Exposure to ionizing radiation and pregnancy

Kathopoulis Nikolaos, Moirogiorgos Dimitrios, Thomakos Nikolaos, Rodolakis Alexandros

First Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Athens, Alexandra hospital, Athens, Greece

Correspondence: Kathopoulis Nikolaos, First Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Athens, Alexandra hospital, 80 Vasilissis Sophias Avenue, GR – 11528, Athens, Greece, E – mail: nickatho@gmail.com


Abstract

The exposure of pregnant women to ionizing radiation is often a source of concern and provokes many questions. This anxiety is often unjustified and the questions are asked too late. Ignorance of the subject is likely to harm the woman who requires investigative imaging or lead to inappropriate attitudes to offer a medical termination of pregnancy after low-level exposure to ionizing radiation. Any approach should look at both maternal and fetal safety. Therefore, it is important to review the key elements of the effects of ionizing radiation on the embryo, the doses received during diagnostic investigations and the attitude to adopt in the main clinical situations.

Keywords: pregnancy, ionizing radiation

p. 49-56