Radiation exposure to the surgeon during closed interlocking intramedullary nailing

P. E. Levin, R. W. Schoen, B. D. Browner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

181 Scopus citations


During interlocking intramedullary nailing of twenty-five femoral and five tibial fractures, the primary surgeon wore both a universal film badge on the collar of the lead apron and a thermoluminescent dosimeter ring on the dominant hand to quantify the radiation that he or she received. When distal interlocking was performed, the first ring was removed and a second ring was used so that a separate recording could be made for this portion of the procedure. At the conclusion of the study, all of the recorded doses of radiation were averaged. The average amount of radiation to the head and neck during the entire procedure was 7.0 millirems of deep exposure and 8.0 millirems of shallow exposure. The average dose of radiation to the dominant hand during insertion of the intramedullary nail and the proximal interlocking screw was 13.0 millirems, while the average amount during insertion of the distal interlocking nail was 12.0 millirems. Both of these averages are well within the government guidelines for allowable exposure to radiation during one-quarter (three months) of a year. Precautions that are to be observed during this procedure are recommended.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)761-766
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Bone and Joint Surgery - Series A
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jan 1 1987
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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