[ RadSafe ] Radiation Absorbed Doses to Others from Therapy

Stabin, Michael michael.g.stabin at Vanderbilt.Edu
Wed Dec 10 11:20:33 CST 2008

Carol Marcus wrote:

> For openers, I strongly recommend that you all completely ignore
Appendix U.  The document contains multiple erroneous constructs to
artificially inflate calculations regarding likely radiation absorbed
dose to persons near patients receiving I-131.  
>Alternatives to Appendix U appear in our Health Physics paper.  I
suggest you adopt this material in your institution.  Basically, most
compliant patients who are not socioeconomically challenged 
may be treated as outpatients.  

Carol makes some good points. This article has been out for a while now,
and I urged readers to look at it here on Radsafe on February 21, 2008.
The RADAR group is working on some new calculations for release of
radioactive patients, using realistic model assumptions (full body Monte
Carlo using voxel phantoms), instead of the unshielded, point source,
radioactive-decay-only model that the Appendix U recommendations are
based on. For now, Jeff Siegel's 2004 document can be used:

Siegel JA. Nuclear Regulatory Commission regulation of nuclear medicine:
Guide for diagnostic nuclear medicine and radiopharmaceutical therapy.
Reston, VA: Society of Nuclear Medicine; 2004.

> As NRC guidance is not a requirement, ignore it.

This is a point that some seem not to appreciate. If one incorporates
NUREGs or other technical documents into one's approved site license,
they become binding, but otherwise they are just recommendations. If
they are good follow them, if not, other sources can be used.

Michael G. Stabin, PhD, CHP
Associate Professor of Radiology and Radiological Sciences
Department of Radiology and Radiological Sciences
Vanderbilt University
1161 21st Avenue South
Nashville, TN 37232-2675
Phone (615) 343-4628
Fax   (615) 322-3764
e-mail     michael.g.stabin at vanderbilt.edu
internet   www.doseinfo-radar.com
"I am realistic -- I expect miracles." - Wayne Dyer

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