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Radiation Safety: A Growing Concern

Aimee J. Phillips, MS, RT(R)(M)(CV)(QM)

   *Educational Services Specialist, Marietta Memorial Hospital, Marietta, Ohio.
   Address correspondence to: Aimee J. Phillips, MS, RT(R)(M)(CV)(QM), Educational Services, Marietta Memorial Hospital, 401 Matthew Street, Marietta, Ohio 45750. E-mail: aphillips@mmhospital.org.

Disclosure Statement: Ms Phillips reports having no significant financial or advisory relationships with corporate organizations related to this activity.

ABSTRACT

One of the basic principles of radiation protection is that radiation dose should always be kept as low as reasonably achievable, or ALARA. Although radiation safety practices are essentially basic, they seem to have become challenging as the number of diagnostic procedures and types of imaging equipment continue to expand. Even though new radiology equipment has drastically improved image quality and speed, it is now much easier to expose patients to excessive amounts of radiation. Therefore, the healthcare team must remain educated in regard to radiation safety so that they can protect their patients and themselves. In addition, the general population is more aware of radiation risks than ever before, and as a result, they demand and deserve accurate information regarding radiation protection. The following article discusses the basics of radiation safety as they relate to different imaging modalities and equipment to provide imaging professionals with the information they need to adequately address their patient's concerns.

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