Assessment of the exposure to gradient magnetic fields generated by mri tomographs: Measurement method, verification of limits and clearance areas through a web-based platform

Riccardo Di Liberto, Daniele Andreuccetti, Moreno Comelli, Giancarlo Burriesci

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This work is the result of a campaign of measures of exposure levels to magnetic field gradients (GMF) generated by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) tomographs, to which both healthcare staff and any persons accompanying patients who remain inside the magnet room are exposed while performing a diagnostic Investigation. The study was conducted on three MRI tomographs with a static magnetic induction field up to 1.5 T installed in two hospitals of Lombardy. The study aims to characterize electromagnetic emissions within the magnet room and the definition of a measurement method suitable for assessing the level of exposure of healthcare personnel and any persons accompanying patients. The measurements performed concerned the determination of the weighted peak index for magnetic induction, due to the diagnostic GMF, relating to the action levels for the workers and the reference levels for the general population, in force in the European Union. Thanks to the defined experimental setup, the use of two different measuring instruments, and the software resources of the WEBNIR platform, it was possible to identify, for both categories of exposed persons, the “clearance” space, i.e., the distance from the magnet of the tomograph that guarantees health protection concerning the exposure to GMF, according to the indications of the standards in force. The method used showed that the exposure levels to GMF are substantially safe for professionally exposed workers who do not carry specific risks. For workers particularly sensitive to the specific risk, as well as to individuals part of the population, it is however advisable to maintain a distance from the magnet of about one meter to prevent sensorial neuromuscular stimulation effects.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3475
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Volume18
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1 2021

Keywords

  • Clearance zone
  • Exposure levels
  • MRI gradient magnetic field measurement
  • Risk assessment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

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