Radiation exposure to sonographers from nuclear medicine patients: A review

Victoria Jean Earl, Mohamed Khaldoun Badawy

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Following nuclear medicine scans a patient can be a source of radiation exposure to the hospital staff, including sonographers. Sonographers are not routinely monitored for occupational radiation exposure as they do not commonly interact with radioactive patients or other sources of ionizing radiation. This review aims to find evidence relating to the risk and amount of radiation the sonographer is exposed to from nuclear medicine patients. It is established in the literature that the radiation exposure to the sonographer following diagnostic nuclear medicine studies is low and consequently the risk is not significant. Nevertheless, it is paramount that basic radiation safety principles are followed to ensure any exposure to ionizing radiation is kept as low as reasonably achievable. Practical recommendations are given to assist the sonographer in radiation protection. Nuclear medicine therapy procedures may place the sonographer at higher risk and as such consultation with a Radiation Safety Officer or Medical Physicist as to the extent of exposure is recommended.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)289-298
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Medical Imaging and Radiation Oncology
Volume62
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2018
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • nuclear medicine
  • radiation exposure
  • radiation protection
  • sonographer

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