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    • RSNA Syllabus for Biological Effects and Radiation Safety Associated with Imaging Modalities Updated 2011-12

    • 1. Radiation Quantities
          a. Exposure
          b. Absorbed Dose
          c. Equivalent Dose
          d. Effective Dose
          e. Activity
          f. Linear Energy Transfer
          g. Questions

      2. Cellular response to radiation
          a. Radiolysis of water and radical formation
          b. Indirect and direct action
          c. Time scale of radiation effects
          d. Cell kinetics, mitotic death and apoptosis
          e. DNA damage and chromosomal aberrations
          f. Cell cycle stage and radiation sensitivity
          g. Sublethal damage
          h. Cell survival curves
          i. Dose-rate effect
          j. The oxygen effect
          k. Relative biological effectiveness (OER, RBE)
          l. Radioprotectors and Radiosensitizers
          m. Questions

      3. Radiation Induced Injury
          a. Stochastic Effects
          b. Deterministic Effects
          c. Questions

      4. Radiation induced cataracts
          a. Questions

      5. Radiation carcinogenesis
          a. Irradiated populations from which quantitative data have been obtained for cancer incidence
          b. The latent period
          c. Sensitivity to radiation-induced cancer as a function of age
          d. Risk estimates for radiation-induced cancer
          e. Questions

      6. Radiation-induced injury to the gonads
          a. Spermatogenesis
          b. Oogenesis
          c. Radiation doses to produce sterility
          d. Hereditary effects of radiation
          e. Questions

      7. Radiation effects on the developing embryo and fetus
          a. Major effects of radiation on the embryo and fetus
          b. Preimplantation
          c. Organogenesis
          d. Fetal period
          e. Survivors of the a-bomb attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki irradiated in utero
          f. Childhood cancer and in uterus irradiation
          g. Occupational exposure of a pregnant worker
          h. Cutoff point for recommendation of therapeutic abortion
          i. Questions

      8. Whole-body radiation effects
          a. Acute radiation syndrome
              i. Prodromal
              ii. Latent
              iii. Cerebrovascular (CNS)
              iv. Gastrointestinal
              v. Hematopoietic (bone marrow)
          b. Kinetics of depression and recovery of blood cell components
          c. LD50/60
          d. Treatment of radiation accident victims
          e. Questions

      9. Sources of radiation to the human population (NCRP 160)
          a. Natural sources
          b. Cosmic rays
          c. Natural radioactivity in the earth’s crust
          d. Internal exposure
          e. Radon
          f. Enhanced natural sources
          g. Man-made sources
          h. Average annual doses from background and diagnostic medicine procedures
          i. Questions

      10. Doses and risks associated with diagnostic radiology, interventional radiology/cardiology, and nuclear medicine
          a. Nuclear medicine
              i. Doses from typical therapeutic and diagnostic examinations
              ii. Breast feeding
          b. Dose and exposure in diagnostic radiology
              i. X-ray procedures
              ii. CT procedures
              iii. Mammography
              iv. Fluoroscopy
          c. Radiation effects in the skin
          d. Fetal Doses
              i. Nuclear medicine
              ii. Diagnostic
          e. Questions

      11. Radiation protection
          a. Objectives of radiation protection
          b. Committees and regulatory bodies concerned with risk estimates and radiation protection
          c. Occupational exposure
          d. As low as reasonably achievable (ALARA)
          e. Protection of the embryo/fetus
          f. Medical and Sentinel Events
          g. Exposure of members of the public (non-occupational)
          h. Questions

      12. Biologic hazards of magnetic resonance imaging
          a. Static magnetic fields
              i. Projectiles
              ii. Implanted metal objects
              iii. Embedded metal objects
              iv. Pacemakers
              v. Vertigo
              vi. Equipment compatibility (Safe, Conditional, Unsafe)
          b. Radiofrequency fields
              i. Radiofrequency waves and Specific Absorption Rate (SAR)
              ii. Response of implanted metal objects
              iii. Potential risk for burns (Closed loops)
          c. Gradient fields
              i. Nerve stimulation
              ii. Loud noise
              iii. Magnetophosphenes
          d. Claustrophobia
          e. Quenching (asphyxiation)
          f. Contrast Agent Reactions
          g. Regulatory limits
              i. 5 gauss line
              ii. Noise limits
              iii. SAR
           h. Questions

      13. Biologic hazards of ultrasonography
          a. Tissue heating, ultrasound frequency and SPTA intensity
              i. Thermal Index (TI)
          b. Ultrasound induced cavitation
              i. Mechanical Index (MI)
          c. Pulsed Doppler
          d. Regulatory limits
          e. Questions