Radiation exposure of trainee anaesthetists

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This prospective study was conducted to determine the level of radiation exposure of trainee
anaesthetists working in urology, orthopaedics and radiology environments. Anaesthetists wore
lithium fluoride thermoluminescent dosimeter (TLD) badges over a 6-month period. The position
of badges was standardised at the collar site (TLD1) and at waist level (TLD2). Area specific
dosimeters were used and exchanged between anaesthetists. Of a total of 723 procedures, anaesthetists
were exposed to radiation in 33% of procedures in orthopaedics, 30% in urology and 39% in
radiology. The mean (SD) exposure time to radiation per case was significantly greater in orthopaedics
than in urology (9.2 (4) min vs. 4.2 (2) min). The radiation exposure per case was highest in
radiology (19.2 (22) min). The net combined exposure over a 6-month period was 0.2177 mSv
in urology, 0.4265 mSv in orthopaedics and 3.8457 mSv in radiology. The combined exposure
was less than the 20 mSv recommended as the maximum exposure per year. Our data does not
support the need for routine dosimetric monitoring of anaesthetists working in the above settings.