Patient Gonadal and Fetal Shielding in Diagnostic Imaging

Huntington-Hill Imaging Centers have adopted a policy to discontinue routine use of patient fetal and gonadal shielding.  This policy will be implemented into practice on January 1, 2022.

Our decision is based on an April 2019 position statement released by the American Association of Physicists in Medicine (AAPM) outlining data driven reasons for discontinuing its use.  The AAPM position statement has since been endorsed by the American College of Radiology (ACR), The Radiological Society of North American (RSNA), the Image Gently Alliance, and other national and international stakeholders in medical imaging.

Therefore, in keeping with Huntington Hill Imaging Centers’ goal to provide patients with the best and most appropriate imaging exam with as little radiation as possible, and to reduce the risk that use of gonadal and/or fetal shielding during diagnostic imaging procedures could interfere with the diagnostic imaging obtained during the procedure, it is the policy of The Hill Medical Corporation that proactive placement of lead shields on patients will be discontinued.  An exception to this policy may only be made if the patient has requested shielding and the radiologist and/or radiologic technologist believes its use will calm and comfort the anxiety of a patient or patient’s guardian enough to improve the exam outcome.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Please review these Frequently Asked Questions developed by the AAPM CARES Committee which includes suggested wording that can be used when discussing patient shielding with patients and parents/caregivers.

If you have additional questions about our policy, please contact your Huntington-Hill Imaging Center Physician Relations Specialist (insert contact # here) – or refer to the provided resource and reference lists following the FAQs.