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June 12, 1967

Thyroid 131I Burdens in Medical and Paramedical Personnel

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Medicine and the Isotope Laboratory (Dr. Blum) and the Department of Environmental Medicine (Dr. Liuzzi), New York (NY) University Medical Center. Dr. Liuzzi is presently affiliated with the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Yale University, New Haven, Conn.

JAMA. 1967;200(11):992-994. doi:10.1001/jama.1967.03120240120031

IODIDE absorption is rapid and complete through the small intestine1 and the pulmonary alveolar capillary interface2 and incomplete through the intact skin.3 After absorption, iodide is distributed to the extracellular fluid from which it is sequestered by the thyroid for hormone synthesis.1 The measurement of thyroid radioactive iodine burdens, therefore, offers a simple index of contamination.

Measurements were made of thyroid131I burdens in a number of medical and paramedical personnel exposed to radioactive iodine in their work, since information concerning low level activity is not available. Burdens were generally expected to be very low, and therefore, a sensitive detection system previously described was used.4

Method of Measurement  Thyroid131I burdens were measured in a low background steel room, with two 3 × 3-inch thallium-activated sodium iodide scintillation crystals placed in contact with the anterior surface of the neck from the sternal notch