All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

Emily Caffrey

Advisory Committee Members

Emily Caffrey

Charles Wilson

Muhammad Maqbool

Document Type


Date of Award



This research evaluates the effectiveness of a Specialized Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory Shielding Device (SCCLSD) compared to traditional shielding methods in reducing occupational exposure to scattered x-rays, contributing to the ongoing enhancement of radiation safety in the cardiac catheterization laboratory (CCL) setting. The upper component of the SCCLSD comprises a mobile, transparent barrier with lead-equivalent malleable drapes designed to conform to the patient's body contours. It is height-adjustable, creating a protective shield against scatter radiation generated during CCL procedures. The lower portion of the SCCLSD replaces traditional lead-lined drapes, extending further down the table and incorporating additional shielding for staff protection.An experimental setup involving an anthropomorphic phantom on the catheterization table simulated radiation scatter from a patient. Measurements were taken at various grid points and heights in the CCL using a RaySafe 452P ion chamber while mimicking a real interventional scenario. In-air peak exposure rates were analyzed at head, chest, and waist heights in the Anteroposterior (AP) position. Results demonstrated that the SCCLSD provided a superior radiation shadow and effective whole-body radiation exposure reduction compared to conventional shielding devices. Considering conventional shielding requires staff to wear lead aprons, an effective dose equivalent correction factor was applied for exposure measurements without the SCCLSD. An estimated exposure rate behind a 0.5 mm lead apron was applied based on NCRP 147 calculations for conventional shielding exposure measurements. The data show low exposure rates behind the SCCLSD, particularly in areas inadequately protected by conventional shielding. Notably, the SCCLSD offered whole-body protection, including the head and arms, which is typically neglected with conventional shielding. The SCCLSD also reduces exposure to the eyes, aligning with lower occupational exposure recommendations from ICRP and NCRP. However, proper CCL staff positioning is important in maximizing the effectiveness of the SCCLSD. Future research avenues may explore exposure rates at different C-arm angles to assess the SCCLSD’s impact more fully on occupational exposure.