The three basic techniques used to keep exposure ALARA are:
Minimize the amount of time spent in proximity to a source of radiation.The potential to receive radiation exposure is directly proportional to the amount of time spent in proximity to a source of radiation.
Please be aware that although conventional x-ray machines usually only emit radiation for a fraction a second, fluoroscopy procedures may involve exposures for much longer periods of time.
Maximize the distance from radiation sources. Just by taking a few steps back from a radioactive source will significantly lower the radiation exposure rate. This applies to x-ray machines as well as other sources of radiation. All radiation emitting machines have a control system that allows the operator and other personnel to maintain a safe distance from the x-ray field.
Frequently asked Questions
Q) If I am transporting prisoners or other patients who have been administered radioactive materials, how can I use "Distance" to keep my exposures ALARA?
A) One way to do this would be to have the patient sit in the rear seat, on the passenger side, when you are transporting him. The radiation levels will decrease significantly just by increasing the distance by a few feet.
Increasing the distance from a radiation source from one foot to four feet will reduce the radiation levels to:
Utilize all shielding provided. Keep shielding in place between you and the source of radiation.
All personnel operating radiation producing devices at MCG have access to shielding such as lead aprons and thyroid shields. Other shielding may include lead walls and doors to keep radiation from exposing individuals outside the room.
You may find plastic shields in radioactive use laboratories.Plastic is used to shield particular types of radioactive materials.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q) What is plastic shielding used for?
A) Plastic is used to shield high energy beta emitting isotopes like phosphorous-32. This isotope is used extensively by MCG research researchers. You may find plastic shields around waste containers, in fume hoods, and on the work benches.