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October 1960

Radiodermatitis and Cancer

Author Affiliations


Rush Associate Clinical Professor of Dermatology, University of Illinois College of Medicine. Consulting Dermatologist to the Presbyterian-St. Luke's Hospital, Chicago.

Arch Dermatol. 1960;82(4):544-547. doi:10.1001/archderm.1960.01580040062011

"Radiodermatitis" is accepted as the designation of the skin changes resulting from injury to this organ by x-rays, radium, and radioisotopes. It is unfortunate nomenclature, but, because of its long-standing usage and acceptance, I shall refrain from suggesting a better name for it, although, if taken at face value, the term might well connote an inflammatory condition of the skin the result of overexposure to the radio or T.V.

It is not my assignment to debate the prophylaxis of radiation effects, or to incriminate procedures which were responsible for the reactions, although it should be emphasized that the radiation responsible for chronic radiodermatitis as seen today for the most part was administered many years ago when techniques, equipment, and knowledge were rudimentary. Nor is it my task to discuss the benefits and hazards from the use of radioisotopes in medicine and industry. But it is my objective briefly to discuss

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