Radiation Protection and Procedures in the Operating Room
With today’s technology advancement, there has been the development of different technologies that are applied in different areas. This will range from engineering, agriculture, and even in medicine. This is exactly what has led man to the development of Radiologic Technology for medical purposes or operations. Radiologic Technology is a field in technology that gives an individual the appropriate professional prowess in medical radiography. This has put man in a position of being able to detect the major disease and progressions in the human body. As a career, Radiologic Technology has been known to modern man as form of health-care professionalism in which its practitioners will be working in clinics, hospitals, and even in imaging centers (Ballinger, 1995).
A radiographer is therefore a member in the growing field of health care practice. Radiographer works hand in hand with other physicians and directly on the patient in the performance of major interventions, and therapeutic operations and procedures in disease diagnosis and organ positioning. So as to be in a position of offering competent medical services to the patient, a radiographer should have enough proficiency and appropriate knowledge in all radiographic exposure, patient positioning, anatomy of the human body, the operation and effective use of specialized scanning equipment, and as well be able to provide the highest care on patient while carrying out therapy. In the modern world, there has been an intensive expansion of diagnostic and imaging technologies which have led to various diversifications and utilization of diagnostic methods in the field of health care. A career in radiologic technology offers vast opportunities for advancement (Berry & Kohn, 2004).
Since this medical field is very important and promising in the field of medicine, it would be necessary that a lot of care is taken whenever carrying out any Radiologic operations in the chambers. This is especially when it comes to the amount of radiations exposed to the patient. The radiations can be damaging to the health of the practitioner and therefore it is always required that there should be proper means of preventing the radiations in the operation chamber. It is through this method of radiation prevention that we can achieve the greatest benefits from all fields of medical practice. This is because both the patient and the radiographer shall be safeguarded from the damaging effects from the radiations. This paper discusses major ways through which radiation can be effectively shielded in the operating room.
Radiation Protection and Procedures in the Operating Room
The use of radiological technology has seen a major breakthrough in the field of medicine. This has brought about developments through which many lives have been saved, and at the same time improving the qualities of life of many individuals. However, the issue of radiation has been one of the setbacks with this technological invention. Because of that, there was the need to come up with appropriate means and ways of protecting the medical practitioners from the radiations due to their impacts in which they can harm human body hence resulting in poor body functioning. This means that there should be the application of safe and effective methods for shielding these radiations from reaching human beings at all costs.
As more radiological techniques continue to come our way, there has been concern on the amount and quality of radiations exposed to both the practitioner and the patient. In modern radiography, there has been an increase in the use of fluoroscopic guided operations and techniques whenever carrying out therapies and surgical operations. Because of the nature of these radiations, many of the medical practitioners have been complaining of these radiations and how they may end up being harmful on their health and that of patients. Because of this, it has become necessary that there is maximum utilization of radiation control procedures and protection of radiations so that no life is endangered (Ballinger, 1995).
In order to be in a position of understanding impacts of these radiations, the best thing is to look at how they are emitted and their effects on human biological systems. It is through these procedures in measuring their intensities that we can come up with appropriate ways through which these radiations can be prevented or minimized. From a number of studies that have been done, it has been possible to come up with some fundamental ways through which these radiations can be shielded. One of the commonly applied ways of preventing these radiations is through use of very thin layered lithiumfluoride pieces or chips.
The above have to be put into the thermoluminescence dosimetry. For instance, a study was done in the move to find out whether or not the use of protective aprons fitted with the above lithium fluoride could provide an adequate prevention and protection of the experts body. The study gave positive results that the clothing could facilitate an effective way of protecting these radiations. However, the study revealed that there were some exposures on the neck, hands and the head. From this study, it was noted that the positioning of the x-ray machine should be placed in a strategic position so that the radiations do not reach some of these parts of the body. Because of this possible exposure, there has been the need to come up with better methods of preventing these radiations from reaching the practitioner and the rest of body parts of the patient as well.
Today, many issues have been argued about these radiations, and hence the need has been to coming up with appropriate measures through which these radiations can shielded. Historically, there was the great need to have fluoroscopy in all operating rooms. However, this was quite rare and had been limited to a number of postoperative occasional angiography (Berry & Kohn, 2004). During the operations, members of staff would be required to step out of the operating room at the time when the image was being captured. However, as days went by, it became a serious issue that a cardiothoracic or heart surgeon may not have to move out of the operating room when the image was being acquired. Because of this there was the need of coming up with appropriate devices that would be effective reducing the amount of radiations exposed on the individual.
One of the current means of reducing these radiations is through the use of RADPAD. This was advocated after some issues were noted with the commonly used aprons that had been leaded. RADPAD has been successfully used in a number of specialty operations that range from interventional urology to radiology as well as with electrophysiology. RADPAD is a protective technique against radiations that was initially developed as the appropriate tool in protecting members of staff in the operating room from all scattered radiations.
The operation of RADPAD is that it is capable of creating a shadow effect against the radiation scatter, and all staff can stand in when the operation is in progress. Since it is placed as a barrier between the radiations and the staff, it has been noted to reduce the scatter radiations by over 60 percent. However, this method may not be sufficiently enough in replacing lead aprons that have been on the use; it will be agreeable that it meets the expected 0.24 mm requirements which is lead-equivalent and hence can offer effective protection of the individual from the radiations (Berry & Kohn, 2004).
From the studies that have been done recently, it has been noted that we can significantly reduce the intensity of these radiations through use of RADPAD. This can be easily used in an operating room and give better results. The RADPAD is hence a sterile, lightweight, and having a single material hence making it easy to clip it onto the middle of a surgical gown won when there are possible radiation exposures.