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Br J Radiol. 2000 May;73(869):504-13.

Correlation of patient skin doses in cardiac interventional radiology with dose-area product.

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Biomedical Physics Department, University Gent, Belgium.


The use of X-rays in cardiac interventional radiology has the potential to induce deterministic radiation effects on the patient's skin. Guidelines published by official organizations encourage the recording of information to evaluate this risk, and the use of reference values in terms of the dose-area product (DAP). Skin dose measurements were made with thermoluminescent dosemeters placed at eight different locations on the body. In addition, DAP was recorded in 100 patients for four types of interventional radiology procedures. Mean, median and third quartile for these results are presented. Maximum skin dose values found were 412 mGy, 725 mGy, 760 mGy and 1800 mGy for coronary catheterization, coronary catheterization with left ventricle investigation, and percutaneous transluminal angiography without and with stenting, respectively. Median DAPs for these same procedures were, respectively, 5682 cGy cm2, 10,632 cGy cm2, 10,880 cGy cm2 and 13,161 cGy cm2. The relationship between DAP and skin dose was investigated. We found a poor correlation of DAP with maximum skin dose (r = 0.77) and skin dose indicator (r = 0.78). Using conversion factors derived from Monte Carlo simulations, skin dose distributions were calculated based on the measured DAPs. Agreement between the calculated skin dose distribution, using DAP values averaged over a group of patients who underwent coronary catheterization and left ventricle investigation, and the measured skin dose averaged over the same group of patients was very good. However, there were large differences between the calculated skin doses using the individual DAP data per patient and measured skin doses for individual patients (r = 0.66). Hence, calculation of individual skin doses based on the specific DAP data per patient is not reliable and therefore measuring skin dose is preferable.

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