While it is agreed that the total dose of radiation is not high, I draw your attention to the following paragraph of the letter I provided a link to above to explain why the current safety studies on these cancer is not adequate and many people would be well advised to avoid them until the studies are done in proper fashion:
We are still greatly concerned that not all tissues are equally exposed to the X-ray
doses. We all now agree (see HHS letter) that the skin and adjacent (critical) tissues
are especially exposed. Indeed, a recent paper (Kaufman, L. & Carlson, J.W., J.
Transp. Secur. vol. 4, pp. 73-94, 2011, Fig. 5), as well as our Figure 1 below (taken
from Peter Rez) show quantitatively how dramatic this is for this energy of X-rays.
There are several potential consequences: First ocular (corneal) lens cells never
regenerate in one's lifetime, thus are at risk for cataract and other problems. Second,
there are now data that, contrary to past medical belief, X-rays will induce skin
localized melanomas (Fink et al., Radiat. Res. Vol. 164, pp 701-710, 2005; (Eliason et
al. Arch. Dermatol. Vol. 143, pp. 1409-1412, 2007). These are typically not counted
under the criteria used of 'lethal cancers induced', under the criteria that skin cancers
are rarely lethal cancers, simply because they can be seen, and if detected in time can
be surgically removed. Third, the recent paper by Brenner (Brenner, D.J., Radiology,
vol. 259, pp. 6-10, 2011) again emphasizes that a significant fraction of the population
(~5%) is potentially at risk for increased sensitivity to X-rays. This fraction includes
people undergoing chemotherapy, previous history of cancer, germ line mutations in
DNA repair genes and people who are immunosuppressed. Fourth, there is likewise the
issue of rescanning a subject after removing a belt, or an absorptive pad which would
double, treble, or quadruple the dose received by the subject.
When it comes to my health, absence of data is not a place which gives me comfort when the theory is scientifically sound.
Edited by Sharklover, 26 January 2012 - 06:07 PM.