What Is The Radiation Range Of The C-arm Machine?


A C-arm X-ray machine is a type of X-ray computed tomography device. Therefore, its use generates a certain amount of radiation, which may cause varying degrees of harm to medical personnel and operators.

Digital Intraoperative 3D C arm PLX7500A

What Is The Radiation Range Of The C-arm Machine?

When X-rays enter the human body, there are three possible effects: 1) passing through the body, 2) being absorbed by the body, and 3) scattering (X-rays generating new rays).

After the rays emitted from the tube enter the body, 1% pass through and reach the image intensifier, 80-90% are absorbed by the patient, and 10-20% are scattered by the body. As the distance from the source increases, the intensity of the radiation decreases to half of its original strength for each doubling of the distance.

Therefore, the farther you are from the C-arm machine, the less radiation exposure you receive. The radiation range of the C-arm machine is over 2 meters, and beyond this distance, the radiation levels are very low. Thus, the safe distance from the C-arm machine in the operating room is more than 2 meters. It is generally recommended to stay behind a lead screen at least 2 meters away.

Is The Radiation From The C-arm Machine In The Operating Room Significant?

The radiation levels from C-arm machines can vary depending on the manufacturer.

What is the radiation range of the C-arm machine? Is the radiation from the C-arm machine in the operating room significant?

For example, the PLX119C c arm produced by Perlove, which is an integrated large flat-panel mobile C-arm, has relatively low radiation leakage in its loaded state, about one-third of the CFDA industry standard.

Wiseye PLX119C Mobile C-arm System with Upgraded FPD

The PLX119C uses Perlove’s independently developed high-frequency high-voltage generator technology. The composition of the X-rays it emits has a higher proportion of hard X-rays, which are less harmful to the human body, and a lower proportion of soft X-rays, which are more easily absorbed by biological tissues.

5 Tips To Protect Against X Ray Radiation

Exposure to radiation from C-arms, comes from two primary sources:

Scatter – radiation that bounces off the patient.

Leakage – radiation emitted from the X-ray tube.

Although many C-arm products are designed to minimize X-ray radiation, doctors and patients can never be too cautious to protect themselves from x ray exposure. To reduce the harm caused by x ray radiation, physicians and technicians in the field of medical imaging and radiography should pay attention to the following 5 points:

1) Distance

According to years of research by Perlove, doctors and technicians should ensure that patients stay about 12 to 15 inches away from the X-ray tube. If the distance is less than this, the X-ray tube will be too close to the skin, increasing the skin dose and causing the image to be blurry, which can lead to repeat imaging and higher radiation exposure for the patient.

2) Adjusting Radiation Output

Perlove’s C-arm X-ray machines effectively adjust radiation output by turning the beam on and off to reduce patient dosage. With this feature, doctors can easily review images even when the radiation beam is off. Adjusting the radiation output helps to minimize the radiation exposure to the patient and the scatter radiation to other personnel in the room.

3) Wearing Protective Gear

All personnel in the room during C-arm imaging should follow these safety guidelines:

a. Wear aprons with a 0.5 mm lead equivalent to avoid scatter radiation. Ensure the aprons are hung up properly when stored to prevent degradation.
b. During fluoroscopic examinations, wear lead glasses, gloves, and thyroid shields.
c. Use ceiling-suspended screens, table curtains, and side shields to protect against scatter radiation when operating the C-arm.
d. All technicians in the room should wear dosimeters/film badges on their aprons. This is important for measuring and recording radiation exposure to unprotected body parts.
e. Technicians should wear two radiation dosimeters:
One on the collar near the thyroid to monitor scatter and leakage radiation in the room.
The second dosimeter should be worn under the lead apron to ensure the radiation passing through the apron is very low.

4) Tracking Radiation Exposure

Radiation-induced damage may not be immediately apparent and can take weeks or months to manifest, so tracking radiation exposure is also necessary.

5) Regular Training


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