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June 8, 1970

Brochure on Radioisotopes For the Patient

Author Affiliations

Church Home and Hospital Baltimore 21231

JAMA. 1970;212(10):1707. doi:10.1001/jama.1970.03170230109026

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To the Editor.—  The use of tracer radioisotopes has been instrumental in broadening the scope of medicine beyond the gross clinical and pathological methods to the spectrum of molecular biology.Although initially limited to university hospitals and research centers, nuclear medicine is now an indispensable department in the majority of hospitals in the United States. Consequently, the clinician has become sophisticated in the application of radioisotopes in his daily diagnostic practice.However, we have neglected our responsibility as physicians in educating the patient with respect to the safety and the innocuous nature of his radioactive exposure.As chief of the department of nuclear medicine at The Church Home and Hospital in Baltimore, I have been cognizant of the patient's fear of radioisotopes and of his complete ignorance of the significance and nature of the study for which he has been scheduled.Consequently, our department, which we feel is patient oriented,