Running a story like this using relative percentages, but no absolute values, is absurd and contemptible.
I'm not finding any absolute values for meningioma rates in any other stories about this particular study, but old pal wikipedia says:
Many individuals have meningiomas but remain asymptomatic (no symptoms) for their entire life, so the meningiomas are not discovered until after an autopsy. 1-2% of all autopsies reveal meningiomas which were unknown to the individuals during their lifetime, since there were never any symptoms. In the 1970s, tumors causing symptoms were discovered in 2 out of 100,000 people, while tumors discovered without causing symptoms occurred in 5.7 out of 100,000, for a total incidence of 7.7/100,000. With the advent of modern sophisticated imaging systems such as CT scans, the discovery of asymptomatic meningiomas has tripled.
I think I'll worry about something else.
Gerd Gigerenzer has a nice book about the way risk is communicated.
Dentists use them because "what's the harm", but now that a harm is demonstrated they should use them only when actually necessary (when "the benefit outweighs the risks").
"Clinically significant: A result that is large enough to affect a patient’s disease state in a manner that is noticeable to the patient and/or caregiver."
But "autopsy" means the person died but not when they died. So an autopsy of a person killed by gunshot in their 20's doesn't alters the average lifetime risk from the xrays.
What is absurd and contemptible is an attitude that "if such and such medical intervention was not proven to cause harm, then we should act as if it does cause no harm", ignoring the fact that the law of unintended consequences trumps what medical science has not yet proven.
The lawyers will get billions, the victims will get $20, while the taxpayers get to pay for the machines now and the settlement later.
A law would be passed removing the ability to sue the TSA for giving you cancer.
>A typical dental x-ray image exposes you to only about 2 or 3 mrem. The National Council on Radiation Protection (NCRP) says that the average resident of the U.S. receives about 360 mrem every year from background sources. This comes from outer space, radioactive materials in the earth, and small amounts of radioactive material in most foods we consume.
>Some typical sources that may expose you to radiation also include smoke detectors (less than 1 mrem per year), living in a brick house instead of a wood one (about 10 mrem per year due to radioactive materials in the masonry), cooking with natural gas (about 10 mrem per year from radon gas in the natural gas supply), reading a book for 3 hours per day (about 1 mrem per year due to small amounts of radioactive materials in the wood used to make the paper), and even from flying in an airplane (about 5 mrem for one cross-country flight because of the increased altitude.)
I wouldn't be surprised if that just means that people are likely to forget about such exams, unless they get a brain tumor and start fretting about what might have caused it. Maybe they'll even start "remembering" radiation exposure in their youth that never actually happened. The study itself may produce such false memories by suggestive questioning.
I'll take note if the link can be shown with real data rather than questionnaires. Until then, I'm sceptical.
This particular cancer is probably a non-risk, but there are a lot of reasons to go digital.
"The safety of routine X-rays has been called into question following the unexpected discovery that cells exposed to low doses avoid or delay repairing damaged DNA."