Cataract is one of the major morbidities in the U.S. population and it has long been appreciated that high and acutely delivered radiation doses of 1 Gy or more can induce cataract. Some more recent studies, in particular those of the U.S. Radiologic Technologists, have suggested that cataract may be induced by much lower, chronically delivered doses of ionizing radiation. It is well recognized that dosimetric measurement error can substantially alter the shape of the radiation dose-response relationship and thus, the derived study risk estimates, and can also inflate the variance of the estimates. In the current study, we evaluate the impact of uncertainties in eye-lens absorbed doses on the estimated risk of cataract in the U.S. Radiologic Technologists' Monte Carlo Dosimetry System, using both absolute and relative risk models. Among 11,345 cases we show that the inflation in the standard error for the excess relative risk (ERR) is generally modest, at most approximately 20% of the unadjusted standard error, depending on the model used for the baseline risk. The largest adjustment results from use of relative risk models, so that the ERR/Gy and its 95% confidence intervals change from 1.085 (0.645, 1.525) to 1.085 (0.558, 1.612) after adjustment. However, the inflation in the standard error of the excess absolute risk (EAR) coefficient is generally minimal, at most approximately 0.04% of the standard error.

This content is only available as a PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.