If nothing else, the cities of the not-too-distant future are going to save a lot of cash on lighting — because Americans have been exposed to so much radiation, it won’t be long before we glow in the dark!
From the cradle to an early grave, you’ve probably been nuked more often than a frozen dinner! You get slammed with CT scans for every head bump…X-rays for every achy tooth… and heart scans every time your doc wants to check on your ticker.
And if you think it’s just a little radiation being thrown your way, I’ve got news for you: One of the most common tests of all will hit you with more radiation than an A-bomb survivor!
You’re supposed to get zapped with 9.7 mSv (a unit that measures radiation exposure) during a run-of-the-mill nuclear stress test, but the new study published in JAMA finds 76 percent of patients get socked with more.
In many cases, a LOT more. Half the time, the dose tops 11.6 mSv.
Let me put that in perspective for you: The Hiroshima and Nagasaki survivors who weren’t killed by the atomic bomb blasts were hit with between 5 mSv and 20 mSv, according to official U.S. government data.
Today, you don’t have to survive a nuclear explosion to get exposed to excessive radiation… you just have to survive a trip to your doctor’s office!
I’d say bite the bullet and go for it IF the test were a matter of life and death — but it’s not.
A 2014 study found that at least a third of the 3.8 million stress tests given every year are completely unnecessary and will lead to nearly 500 new cases of cancer years later.
Even when you do need a stress test, the one WITHOUT radiation will do just fine. That’s the one where you’re hooked up to an ECG and the doc has to read the squiggly lines.
All the info your doc needs is in those squiggly lines, but he prefers the nuclear tests because he can charge more for them — not because he can get more information from them.
Tell him to find another cash cow. If you need a stress test, ask for one without the zaps.