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one’s well-being. And if we can generate better images using less radiation, then it makes sense for us to do so.” He offers an example to show that the population as a whole is becoming more aware of radiological exposure: “More and more patients ask after the event whether the radiation dose they were given was significant. There is a key point that we must note here: the system makes it possible to demonstrate not just the dose, but also the dose for particular table settings. Two years ago I treated an arteriovenous malformation (AVM) in the brain of a young female patient who discovered six weeks later that she was pregnant when the surgery was performed. Calculation of the uterine dose showed this to be virtually zero, since I initially X-rayed this young lady in the region of the aortic arch. The physicist on our team could see this based on the device settings, and was surprised at the same time that no X-ray of the groin had been taken.” Protecting Employees is of Maximum Importance For manufacturers of devices for medical imaging, the important principle in the development process is that users must obtain the best possible image quality but the radiation dose must be kept as low as possible at the same time, since the actual effects cannot be established with total certainty even for low radiation doses, below 100 mSv, for instance. Further technical innovations are constantly needed to achieve these goals, as well as effective training for the radiology staff, to ensure that the devices are used correctly. Prof. Berlis‘ neuroradiology team currently performs more than 300 interventions on patients each year. These include about 100 acute stroke treatments, 100-120 aneurysms and 50 arteriovenous malformations affecting the spinal column and brain. “Reducing the dose helps not only the patient but also the intervention team, which includes the interventionalist, the assistants, the medical technical radiology assistants and the anesthesiology CARE+CLEAR Customer Care team.” This is precisely why radiological protection is considered so important at the Augsburg Clinic. The structures are set up to enable the patient to be monitored outside the examination room, and the anesthesiology team enters the examination room only when needed – to administer medication, for instance. Additional lead-lined walls on rollers protect the intervention and anesthesiology team. Prof. Albrecht appeals to the individual responsibility of each of his colleagues: “They are not always as attentive to their own radiation exposure as I would prefer for myself. I consider minimizing radiation exposure for the intervention personnel to be a matter of key concern. In this connection, progress in the area of device technology must be supplemented by observance of radiation protection measures by the staff.” Dr. Göing agrees, since he understands the task only too well: “Protecting employees as part of our ’constant activity’ in the cardiac catheterization laboratory cannot be rated highly enough.” For more information please visit our CARE+CLEAR website Further Information www.siemens.com/care-clear Contact helene.huebner@siemens.com AXIOM Innovations | December 2013 | www.siemens.com/angiography  81


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