Radiation Exposure in Transjugular Intrahepatic Portosystemic Shunt Creation
OBJECTIVE The objective of our study was to evaluate the exposure doses to patients and radiologists during transcatheter arterial embolization (TAE) for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) using a new angiographic unit with a digital flat-panel system. SUBJECTS AND METHODS Doses were assessed for 24 procedures: 12 using a new unit with a digital flat-panel system and 12 using a conventional unit. Doses to patients' skin were evaluated with thermoluminescent dosimeters behind the left, middle, and right portions of the liver. The doses to the radiologists were measured by an electronic personal dosimeter placed on the chest outside a lead protector. The maximal skin doses to the patients and the dose equivalents, Hp(0.07), to the radiologists were compared between the two procedure groups with each angiographic unit. RESULTS For procedures with the new unit, the mean maximal skin dose to the patients was 284 +/- 127 (SD) mGy (range, 130-467 mGy), and Hp(0.07) to the radiologists was 62.8 +/- 17.4 muSv. For procedures with the conventional unit, the maximal skin dose to the patients was 1,068 +/- 439 mGy (range, 510-1,882 mGy), and Hp(0.07) to the radiologists was 68.4 +/- 25.7 muSv. The maximal skin dose to the patients was significantly lower with the new unit than with the conventional unit (p < 0.0005). There was no significant difference in the Hp(0.07) to the radiologists between the two procedure groups. CONCLUSION The new digital flat-panel system for angiographic imaging can reduce the radiation dose to patients' skin during TAE for HCC as compared with the conventional system.