The administered activity of radionuclides in nuclear medicine. Rational reduction of medical radiation exposure

M. Nakamura, S. Koga, T. Kondo, S. Tachiki, H. Anno, K. Ejiri, H. Toyama, G. Takeshita, K. Nakane, M. Tokuda, K. Yokoyama, A. Takeuchi

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A survey of 104 hospitals was conducted to determine the administered activity of radionuclides. Eighty-five hospitals responded, and reported a total of 119,614 examinations in one year. The examinations included: bone scintigraphy, 26.4%; Thallium-201 (201Tl) myocardial scintigraphy, 15.5%; Gallium-67 (67Ga) scintigraphy, 13.3%; N-isopropyl-p-[123I]iodoamphetamine (IMP) brain perfusion scintigraphy, 7.0%. The administered activity was corrected by body weight only for children at more than 80% of the responding hospitals. The number of hospitals that reported over-administration of radionuclide varied according to the type of scintigraphy performed: bone, 76%; inflammatory (67Ga), 93%; myocardial (201Tl), 89.2%; brain (IMP), 8.5%. The administered activity of IMP was closer to the upper limits specified in the Recommendations on Standardization of Radionuclide Imaging by the Japan Radioisotope Association (1987), because IMP is very expensive and is supplied as single vials. The highest average effective dose was for myocardial scintigraphy, the second-highest for inflammatory scintigraphy, and the third-highest for bone scintigraphy. In 201Tl and 67Ga scintigraphy, the entire contents of the vial may be administered two days before the expiration date, because the ratio of (true patient administered activity) to (declared patient administered activity) is similar to the ratio of (radioactivity on the day of supply) to (radioactivity on the day of expiration). The factors that influence administered activity are throughput, price of the radionuclide, and whether the radionuclide is sold as a single vial. In order to decrease the effective dose, it is necessary to establish a close cooperation between medical personnel, the makers of radiopharmaceuticals, and manufacturers of gammacameras.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)295-301
Number of pages7
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1993

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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