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Radiation Safety in the Cath Lab


Interventional cardiologists and catheterization laboratory staff are among the medical professionals who are most at risk for exposure to unsafe amounts of radiation. While their patients are exposed only to a single dose, those who work in a cath lab are around angiographic X-ray systems every day. It’s no wonder, then, that some studies have shown cardiologists are at greater risk for developing brain tumors and cataracts than other physicians.[1] In particular, peripheral procedures are associated with much higher doses of radiation than coronary procedures and pose a significant risk for workers.

It is imperative for everyone working in the cath lab to take precautions against unnecessarily high levels of radiation exposure. The following are important safety tips for anyone working in a cath lab:

  1. Keep all body parts out of the x-ray range at all times. If the procedure requires direct exposure for the operator, he or she should use proper shielding methods including wearing lead gloves.
  2. Make sure the above-table and below-table shields are always in the right position. All technicians should wear the proper lead garments.
  3. Wear a dosimetry badge at all times. The Instadose®+ digital dosimeter provides daily and cumulative dose readings on demand via a computer or mobile device and it doesn’t need to be collected, processed and distributed every few months like film dosimeters. If an employee feels he or she has been exposed to an unusually high dose, their reading can be checked right away and the proper steps taken to ensure safety.


[1] https://www.acc.org/latest-in-cardiology/articles/2015/12/31/10/12/radiation-safety-for-the-interventional-cardiologist

Key Take-Aways


Cath lab workers are at higher risk for radiation exposure than other medical professionals.


To stay safe, physicians and technicians should keep themselves out of harmful rays and have proper shielding in place.


The Instadose+ digital dosimeter gives cardiologists and other cath lab staff a chance to check their daily and cumulative dose.


Visit www.instadose.com to find out  how this smarter dosimetry technology works  and how it can benefit your workplace or industry.






Topics: radiation exposure

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