Radiation is basically energy in the process of transmission. It takes many forms such as visible light, UV light, signals transmission and many other forms.
While some types of radiation are not harmful, radiation associated with the use of X-rays along with nuclear energy – ionizing radiation – has harmful health effects.
Ionization Radiation Health Effects
Ionization radiation possesses enough energy to interact with the human body and produce ions. However; ionization radiation causes harm to the body through tissue injury depending on the type of radiation, radiation dose, the rate of exposure, and the body part exposed. The symptoms may vary from local burns, sores, ulcers to acute radiation syndrome. The symptoms; however, depend on whether the radiation exposure involves a small portion of the body or the whole body.
Acute Radiation Syndrome vs Focal Radiation Injury
Exposure involving the whole body is known as acute radiation syndrome while focal radiation injury involves exposure to a certain body part. Due to a large portion of the body experiencing a high dose of radiation, the three syndromes that occur are hematopoietic, gastrointestinal and cerebrovascular. The three syndromes go through various phases and the rate of progression depends on the radiation dose.
Diagnosis and Treatment
To offer proper diagnosis, a health care worker considers the signs and symptoms and the history of exposure. Radiation detection equipment helps identify and localize radionuclide contamination. Management of the condition deals with decontamination, traumatic injuries, and minimizing exposure of the health care officers. Patients with internal contaminations receive chelating agents to induce vomiting. Radiation-induced ulcers and sores can sometimes fail to heal and a patient may have to undergo surgical procedures or skin grafting.
Health care and treatment due to exposure to nuclear radiations requires lots of funds to cater for medical expenses. Workers who develop related medical conditions due to exposure to nuclear radiation while at work receive compensation and bills settlement under EEOICPA parts B and E programs.
Do your research to know more about ionization radiation and its effects, and to find out how you can deal with it.