Restrainer exposure to scatter radiation in practical small animal radiography measured using thermoluminescent dosimeters
This study was aimed at estimating restrainer exposure to scatter radiation in veterinary radiography using thermoluminescent dosimeters (TLDs) in different positions, and at different anatomic regions. A prospective study was conducted to measure exposure dose of two restrainers: A (cathode side) and B (anode side), and an observer C (at a 1-meter distance from the X-ray table) over two months. Protective devices included panorama mask, thyroid shield and arm shield. TLDs were placed on the inside and outside of the protective gear at five different anatomic sites (eye, thyroid, breast, gonad and arm). The study data consisted of 778 exposures, 82 patients (78 dogs, four cats), a mean kVp of 58.7 and a mean mAs of 11.4. The doses (outside the shield/inside the shield, in mSv) measured by restrainers A, B and C were eye (3.04/0.42), (2.29/0.17), (0.55/0.01), thyroid (2.93/0.01), (1.97/0.01), (0.19/0.01), breast (1.01/0.04), (0.73/0.01), (0.32/0.01), gonad (0.07/0.01), (0.01/0.01), (0.16/0.01) and arm (2.81/1.43), (1.17/0.01), (0.08/0.01), respectively. This study describes the extent of occupational radiation exposure in small animal radiography. The exposure dose for eyes outside lead protection showed the highest value in all participants. With lead protection, the reduction in the exposure dose of eyes was significant (A: 86%, B: 93%, C: 98%), and the highest reduction was 99% in the thyroid region. These results suggest the necessity of radiation shields in manual restraint, particularly for eye protection.
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