Running a veterinary clinic is no easy task: calming anxious pet owners, pacifying scared animals, and keeping your staff safe are top priorities. One of the biggest potential dangers to staff is exposure to ionizing radiation through X-rays. To maintain a safe clinic, keep these tips in mind:


  • Provide shielding for staff members who work with radiation. The National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements recommends[1] that staff wear lead aprons, thyroid shields and protective gloves and glasses.
  • When patients are uncooperative, use sedation. When an animal struggles, it can become almost impossible for a person to keep his or her hand or arm out of the beam. Sedation ensures that both the animal and staff member stay safe.
  • Collimate your equipment to ensure that staff are using the smallest amount of radiation possible for the desired procedure. This not only protects the staff, but also the patients, from receiving exposures that are higher than necessary.
  • Assign an individual to educate other staff members about radiation safety. This person will take ownership of the office radiation safety guidelines and assume responsibility of making sure everyone adheres to those guidelines.
  • Provide each staff member with a dosimeter to measure radiation exposure. Staff members who work with or near radiation should wear a dosimetry badge at all times. Unlike film, Thermoluminescent Dosimeters (TLD) and Optical Stimulated Luminescence Dosimeters (OSL) badges, the Instadose®+ digital dosimeter provides on-demand radiation exposure dose results on an employee’s computer or mobile device. This is especially important in veterinary practices, where unexpected exposures are more likely than with human patients.

Running a safe clinic is not only good for your staff — it’s also good for business.






Veterinary clinics should provide protective shielding for staff who administer X-rays.

Clinics should have an individual who is responsible for educating staff about radiation safety.

Each staff member should have an Instadose+ digital dosimeter to monitor daily and cumulative radiation dose.




Related Categories: Veterinary Practices