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Dose Estimation for a Study of Nuclear Workers in France, the United Kingdom and the United States of America: Methods for the International Nuclear Workers Study (INWORKS)

​Radiation Research / Volume 183(6), Pages 632-642. May 2015.

Summary

​In the framework of the International Nuclear Workers Study conducted in France, the UK and the U.S. (INWORKS), updated and expanded methods were developed to convert recorded doses of ionizing radiation to estimates of organ doses or individual personal dose equivalent [Hp(10)] for a total number of 308,297 workers, including 40,035 women. This approach accounts for differences in dosimeter response to predominant workplace energy and geometry of exposure and for the recently published ICRP report on dose coefficients for men and women separately. The overall mean annual individual personal dose equivalent, including zero doses, is 1.73 mSv [median = 0.42; interquartile range (IQR): 0.07, 1.59]. Associated individual organ doses were estimated. INWORKS includes workers who had potential for exposure to neutrons. Therefore, we analyzed neutron dosimetry data to identify workers potentially exposed to neutrons. We created a time-varying indicator for each worker, classifying them according to whether they had a positive recorded neutron dose and if so, whether their neutron dose ever exceeded 10% of their total external penetrating radiation dose. The number of workers flagged as being exposed to neutrons was 13% for the full cohort, with 15% of the cohort in France, 12% of the cohort in the UK and 14% in the U.S. We also used available information on in vivo and bioassay monitoring to identify workers with known depositions or suspected internal contaminations. As a result of this work, information is now available that will allow various types of sensitivity analyses.

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