Since cardiac interventional procedures deliver high doses of radiation to the physician, radiation protection for the physician in cardiac catheterization laboratories is very important. One of the most important means of protecting the physician from scatter radiation is to use additional lead shielding devices, such as tableside lead drapes and ceiling-mounted lead acrylic protection. During cardiac interventional procedures (cardiac IVR), however, it is not clear how much lead shielding reduces the physician dose. This study compared the physician dose [effective dose equivalent (EDE) and dose equivalent (DE)] with and without additional shielding during cardiac IVR. Fluoroscopy scatter radiation was measured using a human phantom, with an ionization chamber survey meter, with and without additional shielding. With the additional shielding, fluoroscopy scatter radiation measured with the human phantom was reduced by up to 98%, as compared with that without. The mean EDE (whole body, mean+/-SD) dose to the operator, determined using a Luxel badge, was 2.55+/-1.65 and 4.65+/-1.21 mSv/year with and without the additional shielding, respectively (p=0.086). Similarly, the mean DE (lens of the eye) to the operator was 15.0+/-9.3 and 25.73+/-5.28 mSv/year, respectively (p=0.092). In conclusion, although tableside drapes and lead acrylic shields suspended from the ceiling provided extra protection to the physician during cardiac IVR, the reduction in the estimated physician dose (EDE and DE) during cardiac catheterization with additional shielding was lower than we expected. Therefore, there is a need to develop more ergonomically useful protection devices for cardiac IVR.
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