Korean J Med.  2018 Jun;93(3):237-246. 10.3904/kjm.2018.93.3.237.

Occupational Radiation Exposure and Health Effects among Medical Workers

Affiliations
  • 1Department of Preventive Medicine, Korea University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea. leewj@korea.ac.kr
  • 2Department of Epidemiology and Health Informatics, Korea University Graduate School of Public Health, Seoul, Korea.

Abstract

Medical radiation workers occupy the largest group of radiation workers and is rapidly increasing worldwide. They expose to protracted low-dose radiation and include a large proportion of women. The purpose of this article is to provide an overview of occupational radiation exposure and health effects among medical radiation workers through literature review and from the findings of Korean medical radiation workers' studies. Occupational radiation exposure increases the risk of many chronic diseases including cancer, cataract, cardiovascular diseases, thyroid diseases, and others. Although Korean medical radiation workers had a more favorable mortality than in general population, male workers experienced higher mortality from all cancers, leukemia, cancers of the stomach and the colon, and diseases of circulatory system after adjusting for the lower overall mortality. The potential adverse health risks from occupational radiation exposure are not negligible in medical radiation workers if current working level remains. Therefore, effective prevention efforts are needed to reduce the risks of diseases from occupational radiation exposures.

Keyword

Hospital; Neoplasms; Occupational exposure; Radiation; Workers

MeSH Terms

Cardiovascular Diseases
Cataract
Chronic Disease
Colon
Female
Humans
Leukemia
Male
Mortality
Occupational Exposure
Radiation Exposure*
Stomach
Thyroid Diseases
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