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IRSN, Institut de radioprotection et de sûreté nucléaire

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Enhancing Nuclear Safety


Research

Publications

Electron Paramagnetic Resonance radiation dosimetry in fingernails


Journal title : Radiation Measurements
Volume : 44
Issue : 1
Pagination : 6-10
Publication date : 01/01/2009

Summary

There have been only a modest number of studies of radiation-induced signals in fingernails and while there were some promising aspects, overall the results were inconsistent and had some aspects that indicated that they would be unlikely to be useful for dosimetry. These including an indication that the signals decreased rapidly with time after 24 hours and that the lowest dose that could be estimated was several Gy. But there now is an increased need for after-the fact dosimetry due to the increased risk of significant exposures due to terrorism or accidents. Measurements should be made in individuals rapidly and with sufficient accuracy to enable effective triage to be carried out. We have undertaken a systematic investigation of the potential use of fingernails as dosimeters that could be used in potentially exposed populations to determine if they have received exposure to radiation doses that could be life threatening.

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