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Health Conditions in Interventonal Lab Personnel

Posted on January 23, 2020 by in Safety with no comments

Interventionalists and their staff are exposed to high amounts of radiation every day due to the long, complicated procedures performed and their proximity to the radiation source.  Despite improvements in imaging technology and radiation safety protocols, exposure has increased six-fold in the last 30 years due to the volume and complexity of modern procedures, and nearly 40% of the increased exposure is related to cardiovascular imaging and intervention.[1]

Health Cath Lab Study Group

A 2016 study revealed that health conditions are more common in interventional cardiology/cardiac electrophysiology staff than in unexposed staff (see Figure 1) and that the rate of these problems increased with the number of years of work in this occupation[2] (see Figure 2). These conditions included cancer, skin lesions, cataract and orthopedic illnesses while secondary findings included increased risks of hypertension, hypercholesterolemia and anxiety/depression.  The elevated risk profile of interventional staff for these conditions was found despite adherence to international and federal dose limits.

The study showed that interventional staff are six times more likely to develop anxiety/depression, five times more likely to develop orthopaedic illnesses, three times more likely to develop skin lesions and two times more likely to develop cancer than unexposed staff working in the same hospital.

Figure 1

Increased hazard ratios were found for skin lesion, orthopaedic illness, cataracts, thyroid disease, anxiety/depression, hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, and cancer.


Figure 1

Incidence for skin lesions, orthopaedic illness, cataracts, hypertension, high cholesterol, and cancer increased over time in studies conducted by the Healthy Cath Lab Study Group


Your exposure today may not be felt for years to come. Radiation-induced disease can have a biological latency of more than 10 years.[3]

Radiation Safety

Medical imaging professionals can have long, safe careers when they monitor their exposure and employ the three principles of radiation protection: time, distance and shielding.

“Just because you can’t smell it, see it or feel it, doesn’t mean it isn’t serious; in fact, the lack of such stimuli may make it ever more serious.”

       – Lee F. Rogers, MD, Editor in Chief, American Journal of Roentgenology, July 2001

The Solution

RADPAD® is the only clinically-proven, non-lead and non-vinyl, lightweight and disposable shield that can guarantee a 95% reduction in x-ray scatter radiation. The RADPAD® shield works by creating a “shade zone” on the patient where radiation is absorbed into the shield. This allows the clinician to move freely within this zone with significantly reduced scatter radiation, all while protecting the patient.

RADPAD® 5000 series products are comprised of several procedure-specific radiation protection shields designed to provide maximum protection to the operator and cath lab personnel during fluoro-guided procedures.

RADPAD® 7000 series are comprised of several procedures specific sterile drape + RADPAD® Radiation Protection Shields, designed to protect operators and cath lab personnel during fluoro-guided procedures.

RADPAD® No Brainer® is an attenuation material-lined scrub cap worn by the cath lab personnel to protect their brain from scatter radiation during fluoro-guided procedures.

RADPAD® Thyroid Shield w/ Cover is a RADPAD® thyroid shield worn by the cath lab personnel to protect thyroid glands during fluoro-guided procedures.

Because you can’t see or feel scatter radiation, you must be able to trust that what you’re doing for protection is actually going to work. We all know that real trust comes with “real proof,” and that’s why RADPAD has been involved in more than 40 independent clinical studies proving product effectiveness.  Today, over 50% of US hospitals use RADPAD as part of a radiation safety protocol to protect their staff from the long-term health effects of chronic low dose exposure to ionizing radiation.

Learn More

To learn more about the RADPAD®, please contact your local sales representative, email us at info@radpad.com or call 913-648-3730.

[1] National Council on Radiation Protection & Measurements. Ionizing Radiation Exposure of the Population of the United States. Bethesda, MD National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements, (2009) 160.

[2] Andreassi, et al. 12 Apr 2016 https://doi.org/10.1161/CIRCINTERVENTIONS .115.003273 Circulation: Cardiovascular Interventions. 2016

[3] Venneri, L, et al. Cancer risk from professional exposure in staff working in cardiac catheterization laboratory: Insights from the National Research Council’s Biological Effects of Ionizing Radiation VII Report. American Heart Journal, (2009) 157: (1), 118-124

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