Estimating historical radiation doses to a cohort of U.S. radiologic technologists

Radiat Res. 2006 Jul;166(1 Pt 2):174-92. doi: 10.1667/RR3433.1.


Data have been collected and physical and statistical models have been constructed to estimate unknown occupational radiation doses among 90,000 members of the U.S. Radiologic Technologists cohort who responded to a baseline questionnaire during the mid-1980s. Since the availability of radiation dose data differed by calendar period, different models were developed and applied for years worked before 1960, 1960- 1976 and 1977-1984. The dose estimation used available film-badge measurements (approximately 350,000) for individual cohort members, information provided by the technologists on their work history and protection practices, and measurement and other data derived from the literature. The dosimetry model estimates annual and cumulative occupational badge doses (personal dose equivalent) for each technologist for each year worked from 1916 through 1984 as well as absorbed doses to organs and tissues including bone marrow, female breast, thyroid, ovary, testes, lung and skin. Assumptions have been made about critical variables including average energy of X rays, use of protective aprons, position of film badges, and minimum detectable doses. Uncertainty of badge and organ doses was characterized for each year of each technologist's working career. Monte Carlo methods were used to generate estimates of cumulative organ doses for preliminary cancer risk analyses. The models and predictions presented here, while continuing to be modified and improved, represent one of the most comprehensive dose reconstructions undertaken to date for a large cohort of medical radiation workers.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Body Burden
  • Cohort Studies
  • Computer Simulation
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Models, Biological
  • Neoplasms, Radiation-Induced / epidemiology*
  • Occupational Diseases / epidemiology*
  • Occupational Exposure / analysis*
  • Occupational Exposure / statistics & numerical data*
  • Organ Specificity
  • Radiation Dosage
  • Radiation Monitoring / instrumentation
  • Radiation Monitoring / methods*
  • Radiation Monitoring / statistics & numerical data
  • Relative Biological Effectiveness
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Risk Assessment / methods*
  • Risk Factors
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Technology, Radiologic / statistics & numerical data*
  • United States / epidemiology