American Association of Physicists in Medicine (AAPM) issues a position statement on use of Bismuth shielding

The use of bismuth shielding has been a controversial subject. While there is no doubt on efficacy of these shields for reduction of patient dose to radiosensitive organs of the body, some reports indicate that the same results can be achieved using features of equipment and thus the possibility of artefacts or high noise can be avoided. AAPM has just issued a position statement on this topic. The summary text of the statement as available on APPM website

Bismuth shields are easy to use and have been shown to reduce dose to anterior organs in CT scanning. However, there are several disadvantages associated with the use of bismuth shields, especially when used with automatic exposure control or tube current modulation. Other techniques exist that can provide the same level of anterior dose reduction at equivalent or superior image quality that do not have these disadvantages. The AAPM recommends that these alternatives to bismuth shielding be carefully considered and implemented when possible.

The full text and rationale of the statement is available at »

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