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The Influence of Population Aging and Size on the Number of CT Examinations in The Netherlands

Bijwaard, Harmen*†; Pruppers, Mathieu*; de Waard-Schalkx, Ischa*

doi: 10.1097/HP.0000000000000050
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Exposures to ionizing radiation from medical examinations are on the rise. An important cause for this has been the advent and ever-increasing use of computed tomography (CT) scans for diagnostic purposes. It is often implied that population aging contributes significantly to this rise. Here, the trends in population statistics are compared to the trend in the number of CT scans in the Netherlands for the period 2002–2010. It is concluded that population growth and population aging cannot explain the observed rise in CT examinations. In fact, these factors contribute only 17% to this rise, indicating that there must be other factors that are far more important.

*Centre for Environmental Safety and Security, National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM), Antonie van Leeuwenhoeklaan 9, 3721 MA, Bilthoven, The Netherlands; †Lectorate Medical technology, University of Applied Sciences Inholland, Bijdorplaan 15, 2015 CE, Haarlem, The Netherlands.

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

For correspondence contact: Harmen Bijwaard, Centre for Environmental Safety and Security, National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM), Antonie van Leeuwenhoeklaan 9, 3721 MA, Bilthoven, The Netherlands, or email at harmen.bijwaard@rivm.nl.

(Manuscript accepted 8 October 2013)

© 2014 by the Health Physics Society