[ RadSafe ] I-131 patient during intercontinental flight

Stabin, Michael michael.g.stabin at Vanderbilt.Edu
Wed Feb 11 06:01:58 CST 2009

For security reasons, of course, the authorities will not discuss the location or detection sensitivities of these detectors. We have tried to find out for legitimate scientific investigations, but we understand the reasons for secrecy.

One may apply a 5 mSv or 1 mSv dose criterion to members of the public who may be exposed and integrate the theoretical exposure over the expected time of contact. Use of an unshielded, point source to represent the patient is known to be overly conservative, more realistic models should be used if possible. Jeffry Siegel has published an excellent guidance document that is helpful in this regard:

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

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


Message: 2
Date: Mon, 9 Feb 2009 10:21:52 +0200
From: "Moshe Levita" <mlevita at tasmc.health.gov.il>
Subject: [ RadSafe ] I131 patient during intercontinental flight 
To: <radsafe at radlab.nl>
Message-ID: <002601c98a8f$764b1bc0$df83640a at tasmc.corp>
Content-Type: text/plain;	charset="windows-1255"

Dear Colleagues,

Many Iodine 131 patients arrives in Israel to be treated and then fly back home. 
The patient stays in the award until the residual dose is below certain level.
(Residual activity is calculated by the measurement of dose rate at 1 m)

I wonder at what residual activity it will be reasonable to allow the patient to fly back to his country.
One have to take into considerations :

1.  Five hours flight of sitting beside another passenger (who might be a child or pregnant women)
2.  Definite contamination of the airplane toilet, toilet cleaning, toilet disposal etc.
3.  Possible triggering of airport radiation alarm monitors.

Any suggestion will be welcomed.

Moshe Levita
Chief Radiation Executive
Ministry of Health

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