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Radiation Safety Aspects
OncoSil™ contains radioactive 32P Microparticles. Phosphorous-32 emits beta radiation with no associated gamma emissions that travel only a few millimetres in tissue and up to 6 metres in air. The primary radiation exposure hazard for occupational staff, for example nuclear medicine technicians, working with beta emitting isotopes is direct skin contact. In the case of OncosilTM this is equivalent to direct skin contact with liquids containing the microparticles, for example the diluent /microparticle suspension or the washing liquids used to clean after an implantation.
A secondary radiation hazard is the interaction of beta particles at close range with dense, or high atomic number materials creating X-ray emissions (bremsstrahlung radiation). Therefore, vials and syringes containing 32P should be appropriately shielded.
Once the patient has received the OncoSil™ implant, they effectively become the radiation source. Whilst OncosilTM contains the Beta emitting isotope P32 once implanted the only radiation emitted from the patients' body is the bremstrahlung and consequently patients pose a very small radiation risk to staff and other contacts. However, some general precautions should be observed, and local regulations may over-ride these general guidelines.
Special care must be taken to minimise radiation exposure to persons preparing OncoSil™ and treatment facility personnel involved in handling and implanting OncoSil™ to patients.