Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

MS in Physician Assistant Studies (PA)


Physician Assistant Studies

First Advisor

Alicia Quella, PhD, PA-C


Background: Occupational radiation exposure is a health risk for many healthcare professionals working in interventional cardiology. As technology has progressed, interventional procedures have become more complex and subsequently longer in radiation exposure duration, resulting in a need for radiation safety practices to meet the ever growing demands of the interventional team and ideally outpace these demands.

Methods: A comprehensive systematic literature review was conducted using PubMed. Articles on the health risks of occupational radiation exposure were selected to demonstrate the breadth of potential adverse effects of radiation exposure with less focus on the depth of these effects. Articles covering occupational radiation safety practices were selected with a focus on radiation safety practices relative to body region and procedural aspects.

Results: Brain cancer, cataracts, cardiovascular disease, thyroid disease, mental health conditions, skin lesions, and orthopedic problems are some of the most prevalent occupational radiation exposure health risks. Fortunately, these risks have largely been reduced through utilization of personal and ancillary radiation shielding and improved procedural aspects.

Conclusion: Radiation is invisible and adverse effects may not present until years later, which may result in interventional cardiology providers becoming complacent and less vigilant with radiation safety practices. Furthermore, some interventional cardiology providers utilize suboptimal radiation safety practices due to perceived inconveniences and discomfort as well as the belief that optimal radiation safety practices may risk image quality and procedural efficiency. Ultimately, the greatest occupational radiation exposure reductions result from the reduction of radiation exposure to the patient due to reduced radiation scatter.


SC 11.PAS.2020.Young.B

Included in

Radiology Commons