Radiation Essay

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Radiation has always been in everyday life even before Roentgen discovered x-ray. The mountains give off natural radiation, other forms of radiation are coal burning power plants, x-rays from a TV, and an airplane ride. The average dose from background radiation is about 360 mrem every year. There are two types of radiation, nonionizing and ionizing radiation. Examples of nonionizing radiation are microwaves and radio waves broadcasting. Ionizing radiation refers to gamma and x-rays. Ionizing radiation means that the rays are able to remove an electron from the atom then ions can be formed. The ions can cause damage when reacting with other atoms. Cells are able to be repaired if low dose are received. However, if cells get a high dose, the cells will be damaged or possibly die. If the cell is damaged permanently then it is referred to as a mutated cell.
There are ways to better understand how radiation affects the body when compared to other every day activities. If an occupational worker receives 1 rem per year then is it possible that 51 days is expected to be lost. A person that smokes 20 cigarettes a day takes about 6 years off of their life. People that are overweight by 15% take about 2 years off of their life. In actuality radiation would seem as though it is not any more harmful than other everyday activities people decide to do such as smoke, chew tobacco, or sky dive. The risk of taking days, weeks, years off of ones lives will always be present depending on the activity they choose to be part of. However, radiation exposure in the healthcare field is used to extend the patient’s life by helping them find out what is going on in their body. A patient that comes in with RLQ pain, nausea, and vomiting then an abdomen x-r...

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...om the radiation, the source of radiation comes from beneath the patient. Spot fluoroscopy should be utilized to minimize radiation to the patient, radiologist, and radiologic technologist. Radiologist and radiologic technologist must wear a lead apron and thyroid shield. A lead shield is put on the front to protect the radiologist and the tech. (Statkiewicz-Sherer, 1983)
Radiation has changed drastically over the past 118 years. Exposures are much quicker, digital imaging is a possibility in most hospitals, and most importantly, radiation protection. Many people have died, some without realizing that they were killing themselves, for the advancement of x-rays. Because of these advancements physicians are able to tell patients what is going on very quickly and without much delay. It is very important to remember the 3 cardinal rules: distance, time and shielding.

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