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The authors conducted a survey of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) to determine awareness of the Image Gently Campaign in Dentistry (IGCD) and to ascertain radiologic practices, including radiation dose-reduction strategies such as rectangular collimation.
An institutional review board approved an electronic survey sent to 7,087 AAPD members covering practitioner demographic characteristics, radiographic techniques, and dose-reduction practices, including rectangular collimation. Responses were tabulated and analyzed using binomial tests, χ2 tests, and Fisher exact tests.
A total of 1,124 pediatric dentists or residents in pediatric dentistry responded, (response rate 16%, margin of error ± 2.7%). The largest group (23.8%) graduated after 2010. More than 90% indicated that they followed American Dental Association (ADA)-AAPD radiation exposure guidelines, but only 33.5% were aware of IGCD. Almost all respondents used direct digital systems, storage phosphor plates, or both. Only 22.3% (n = 220) used rectangular collimation. Nonusers indicated that they were unfamiliar with collimation (33.3%) or concerned about potential for increased cone cuts (30.2%), 11.6% of respondents were unaware of any regulatory requirements for inspections of radiographic equipment recurring at regular intervals, and 4.1% of respondents considered use of lead aprons optional.
Although the pediatric dentists surveyed believe they are in compliance with ADA-AAPD guidelines, most are unaware of IGCD recommendations. Use of digital radiography is almost ubiquitous, but use of rectangular collimation is limited.
Dentists treating children should be familiar with ADA-AAPD radiation exposure guidelines and should consider using the dose-reduction strategies recommended by IGCD.