Thursday, November 15, 2012

The Field Of Radiology Is A Very Safe Working Situation.

How we protect ourselves from radiation?

We stand behind a leaded wall and window. The leaded walls (which every x-ray room has) will protect anybody behind that wall.

We wear a lead apron when we must be in the room during x-ray exposure , such as fluoroscopy. Fluoroscopy is a study of moving body structures that you could compare to an x-ray “movie”. A continuous x-ray beam is passed through the body part being examined that is transmitted to a TV-like monitor so that the body part and its motion can be seen in detail. Fluoroscopy is used in many types of examinations and procedures, such as barium enema (BE), Small Bowel Series (SBFT), Myelogram and Hysterosalpingogram (HSG).

We use time and distance to our advantage. We never stand next to the patient when we are taking a x-ray. For example, for a portable chest x-ray in the ICU, we position the patient and use an exposure button on a long cord, so we can create distance between us and the radiation. We limit the amount of time that we are exposed to radiation.

We try to NEVER hold a patient who cannot maintain the required position for their x-rays. We try to find a family member to help hold a child, for example.
We never point the primary radiation beam at ourselves.

We wear a radiation badge, which does not protect us from radiation, but monitors our exposure. My badge has always registered ZERO. I have been here for over 25 years, and I have never seen a co-worker register the amount of radiation which would require his/her working duties to be limited.

What are the basic measures in radiation protection?

Time - Shortening the time of exposure.
The less time that people are exposed to a radiation source, the less the absorbed dose.

Distance - increasing distance from a radiation source.
The farther away that people are from a radiation source, the less the absorbed dose.

Shield - shielding are the basic protective measures to reduce doses from external exposure.
Barriers of lead, concrete or water can stop radiation or reduce radiation intensity.

The field of radiology is a very safe working situation. We know how to protect ourselves, and we are diligent in doing that!.

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