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Dosimetry and Dose Optimization

Conventional Imaging


Dosimetry in diagnostic and interventional application differs considerably from radiotherapy dosimetry. The current basic standard on dosimetry in this field is best described in the IAEA International code of Practice (TRS 457) where Robert Nowotny, former member of the Radiology Physics group, has been involved. This publication dates back to 2007 but still represents the current standard. In 2011 it was expanded and detailed by IAEA HHS4 where this group was also involved (among many others). However, we do not only engage in dosimetry metrology. Our regular work reaches out for the clinics where we assist clinicians in regular clinical work and research projects requiring accurate dose determination of patients or in phantoms.

Applications of dosimetry include the definition of Diagnostic reference levels (DRLs). These levels indicate dose levels not be exceeded for standardized procedures on regular basis for standard patients. All studies used as a basis for the definition of DRLs in Austria including the 2020 update were conducted with involvement of this group.

Dose optimization in diagnostic and interventional radiology is a key task for medical physics. However, it necessitates sound dosimetry to accurately determine dose levels applied. Closely linked to optimization is the development and testing of appropriate phantoms.

Dose Optimization

In dose optimization diagnostic reference values (DRLs) play a major role. They help to identify situations, where unnecessary patient doses are used for standard radiographic or interventional procedures. It is still very common find average patient dose variations for otherwise identical procedures by a factor of 10 or more between institutions. Researchers from this group have been involved in all DRL studies and in the expert committee defining the dose reference levels in diagnostic and interventional radiology stipulated by the Austrian Medical Radiation Protection Ordinance (MedStrSchV).