INTRODUCTION: Digital radiography (DR) systems enable radiographers to reduce the radiation dose to patients while maintaining optimised image quality. However, concerns still exist about paediatric patients who may be exposed to an increased level of radiation dose which is not needed for clinical practice. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the knowledge, awareness and attitudes, in terms of image quality optimisation of radiographers undertaking paediatric DR in Australia and Saudi Arabia.
METHODS: A survey-based study was devised and distributed to radiographers from Australia and Saudi Arabia. Questions focused on Australian and Saudi Arabian radiographers' knowledge and attitude of paediatric DR examinations.
RESULTS: There were 376 participants who responded to the survey from both countries. A major finding showed that most participants lack knowledge in the area of paediatric DR examinations. Most participants from Australia had received no formal training in paediatric digital radiography (79%), whereas nearly half of the participants from Saudi Arabia received no training (45%). Approximately three out of four radiographers from both countries believed that when using DR they did not need to change the way they collimate the beam as DR images can be cropped using post-processing methods.
CONCLUSION: The finding of this study demonstrates that radiographers from both countries should improve their understanding and clinical use of DR in paediatric imaging. More education and training for both students and clinicians is needed to enhance radiographer performance in digital radiography and improve their clinical practices.