Bowel cancer treatment and side effects


Safe number of PET/CT scans

I have been reading about the safety of CT scans and the risk of radiation causing cancer. It has just raised a few concerns in my forever overactive brain, as I am still having 3 monthly PET/CT scans. Just wondering what everyone’s views are regarding this and if @RosemaryA could offer any advice. Love D :x::x::x::x::x:


Hi @DianeS I have always heard that CT scans are not more harmful than the x-ray at the dentist.


God morning @DaineS

I’m not sure about the safety of multiple scans/X-rays etc but my view is that they are certainly the lesser of two evils. I’d much rather take the risk of multiple scans to detect cancer progression/mets than not. I guess nothing is without risk.

Hope all well with you?

Lots of love,



Hi @DianeS it’s tiny risk. And none of us could be without scans could we, bloody clever things that save lives. Just don’t spend time thinking about it is all I can suggest :x::x:


Many thanks @"Jon-T", @Baxter2 and @HH79. This thing popped up on FB that started me off last night....doesn’t take much. I have no option but to have the scans anyway, the only one that has no radiation is an MRI scanner. The radiologist said to me a while ago ‘you are having a lot of scans’ so I suppose it’s been in my mind and then I started to Google after the FB post yesterday. Silly me! I’m good thanks @Baxter2 going for bloods and port flush this morning. How are you doing? Love D :x::x::x::x:


I’m doing fine thank you @DianeS

Hope you have a lovely weekend.



Morning @DianeS - I'm with @Baxter2 @HH79 on this: I'm sure your medical team has judged that the limited exposure from the scans is far outweighed by the opportunity to catch anything untoward early.
Stay on the forum - you know it's the place to be! :x::x:


Many thanks @RosemaryA for your reply, those small hours of the morning are bad thinking time. It just takes sight of one thing and re assurance is needed. :x::x::x::x::x:


Hi @DianeS, I had this discussion with my team at the Christie in March when I asked for a CT scan and they said hat I had one at the end of January and they like at least 3 months really. So I wouldn't get too jittery about it Diane, I agree with @Baxter2 that it is the lesser of the two evils.
I also have these thoughts about radiation, how do the staff go on? With exposure every day, I know they wear lead gowns or go behind the screen, but who knows if this is adequate protection.
You are doing just grand, good luck.:x::x:


Aaaah thank you @Clancy I agree it is the lesser of two evils. Always great to be able to get feedback from others, and what their oncologists have said to them. Not sure what we would do without our friends on the forum. Love D :x::x::x::x:


@DianeS my onc is quite mean with scans. His comment, I’m trying to cure you not kill you with radiation. Private so not a funding issue


Hi @DianeS , I found the following information from Public Health England.

It gives examples of scans that use xrays (including various CT scans) and gives an estimate of lifetime additional risk of developing a fatal cancer from such scans. It doesn't show PET/CT scans as the radiation involved in these is gamma radiation (from the positron/electron recombination) as well as the xrays, but according to the American Cancer Society website, a typical PET/CT scan will result in about 25mSv of radiation which is equivalent to about 2.5 abdomen/pelvis CT scans.

Looking at these results, I believe that the benefits well outweigh the risks - which is quite good considering the number of scans my husband's had over the past 4 years!


Hi @Ev thank you so much for posting this information, really kind of you and very helpful. I do now believe the benefits outweigh the risks. At least while I’m in this monitoring period a scan will pick anything up quickly, so that it can be dealt with right away. :x::x::x::x:


Hi @DianeS, a very good question . I have now had 13 ct scans and often wonder if this will have any effects in the future!! :x::x: