Radiation exposure to anaesthetists during interventional radiology

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This prospective study determined the level of radiation exposure of anaesthetists during interventional radiological procedures performed in the endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography suite and cardiac catheterisation laboratory and compared it with the current safety guidelines. Anaesthetists wore area-specific lithium fluoride thermo-luminescent dosimeter badges at standardised positions. A total of 1344 procedures were performed over a 6-month period. Anaesthetists were involved in 39/645 (6.0%) procedures associated with ionisation radiation in the endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography suite and 86/699 (12.3%) in the cardiac catheterisation laboratory. The mean (SD) duration of endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography was 54.8 (29.1) min compared with 67.9 (42.8) min for cardiac catheterisation suite procedures (p = 0.058). The mean (SD) fluoroscopy time per procedure for endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography was 5.5 (4.1) min compared with 12 (10.9) min in the cardiac catheterisation suite (p < 0.001). The combined net radiation exposure over 6 months was 0.28 mSv for endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography procedures and 2.32 mSv in the cardiac catheterisation suite. The combined exposure was less than the maximum recommended exposure of 20 mSv per year.