Radiation in Gastroenterology

Monjur Ahmed, Razin Ahmed


The benefit of radiation is immense in the field of gastroenterology. Radiation is used daily in different gastrointestinal imaging and diagnostic and therapeutic interventional procedures. Radiotherapy is one of the primary modalities of treatment of gastrointestinal malignancies. There are various modalities of radiotherapy. Radiotherapy can injure malignant cells by directly damaging DNA, RNA, proteins, and lipids and indirectly by forming free radicals. External beam radiation, internal beam radiation and radio-isotope therapy are the major ways of delivering radiation to the malignant tissue. Radiation can also cause inflammation, fibrosis, organ dysfunction, and malignancy. Patients with repeated exposure to radiation for diagnostic imaging and therapeutic procedures are at slightly increased risk of malignancy. Gastrointestinal endoscopists performing fluoroscopy-guided procedures are also at increased risk of malignancy and cataract formation. The radiological protection society recommends certain preventive and protective measures to avoid side effects of radiation. Gastrointestinal complications related to radiation therapy for oncologic processes, and exposure risks for patients and health care providers involved in diagnostic or therapeutic imaging will be discussed in this review.

Gastroenterol Res. 2022;15(6):285-296
doi: https://doi.org/10.14740/gr1567


Units of radiation; Use of radiation in gastroenterology; Radiation esophagitis; Radiation gastritis; Radiation enteritis; Radiation colitis; Radiation proctitis

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