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June 1974

Grenz Ray Shielding

Arch Dermatol. 1974;109(6):914. doi:10.1001/archderm.1974.01630060082034

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To the Editor.—  Grenz rays used for the treatment of benign skin diseases have a half-value layer in the range of 0.018 to 0.035 mm of aluminum. We considered whether commercial heavy-duty aluminum foil would suffice for shielding the skin surrounding the lesion from the grenz rays. To our surprise, the heavy-duty foil sold in supermarkets for household uses (like roasting turkey) proved, upon measurement, to be only 0.02 mm thick! This means that more than half the radiation given would pass through one layer of foil, and even three layers could not be considered heavy enough protection! We recommend that lead rubber and cones be used for shielding in grenz ray therapy.

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