Conference Paper

CHANGES IN OCCUPATIONAL RADIATION EXPOSURES AFTER INCORPORATION OF A REAL-TIME INTERVENTIONAL SUITE DOSIMETRY SYSTEM.

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Abstract

Because of continual increases in the rate of Interventional Radiology (IR) procedures, Lawrence General Hospital (LGH), Lawrence, MA, has incorporated the RaySafe i2 real-time dose monitoring system (RaySafe, Hopkinton MA) into their radiation safety program. This system monitors and displays personnel exposures in real-time on the IR screen during a procedure, and it provides immediate safety feed-back to the IR staff without removing their focus from the procedure. In this study, the potential of the RaySafe i2 system to reduce personnel radiation exposures wasstudied for the LGH IR staff. Dosimetry records were obtained for an 8 mo period both prior to and post RaySafe i2 implementation. Study participants, who must have worked during both study periods, consisted of three radiologists, three technologists, and one nurse. The average dose per procedure for each participant was obtained for the pre RaySafe i2 period and compared to that obtained for the post RaySafe i2 period. A Student’s t-test was used to validate differences in department radiation exposures pre and post RaySafe i2, while a Wilcoxon Signed Rank test was used to validate exposure differences for the radiologist and technologist groups. Lastly, the percent change in the average dose per procedure was calculated for each participant. A dose reduction of 47% was observed in the IR Department post RaySafe i2 implementation (p-value of 0.04). Similarly, the dose to the radiologist group was reduced by 53% (p-value of 0.01) and the technologists group by 42% (p-value of 0.03) post RaySafe i2. In this study, all participants received reduced exposures post Raysafe i2 implementation with reductions varying between ~15% to ~65%. These results demonstrate that the RaySafe i2 enabled the staff to appropriately alter their work habits, which resulted in statistically significant lower personnel exposures.

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