MadSci Network: Medicine
Query:

Re: Re: name some positive contributions of radioactive materials to medicine?

Date: Tue May 27 14:57:37 2003
Posted By: Bernadette Baca,
Area of science: Medicine
ID: 1051557272.Me
Message:

Nuclear science and technology improves our life in many ways and in many
different areas and not just through medical applications.  It makes our
food safer; it improves the quality of tools, gauges, and machines; it
diagnoses abnormalities of the metabolism and treats cancers; it powers
space applications; and it offers one of the cleanest and most
environmentally friendly ways of generating electricity.

To simply list all the contributions radiation, or more appropriately
radiation sources, have made to mankind, it would produce an enormous list.
 I have listed at least one web site from each of the major categories
radiation is a key benefit or use.  There are probably hundreds more.  In
fact, there are some areas I may have forgotten about or just do not know
about yet.  With technology advancing as quickly as it does, procedures,
medication, and every day processes can change practically over night.

Radioactive material and radiation sources are found in a significant
portion of our lives.  For example there are smoke detectors,
self-illuminating exit signs, and a limited number of computer cells with
radioactive material for current generation.  In the medical world, there
are diagnostic and therapeutic uses for various radioactive isotopes, as
well as the long standard x-ray use.  Radiation sources and materials are
used to irradiate our food and surgical instruments to make them safer. 
Radiation is also used in industry as a level and density gauge and some
times a component in the hardening of certain materials.  In addition,
radioactive carbon dating and other non-destructive testing using radiation
allow us to discover our past and gain details of our history.

Again, these are just a few websites listing the benefits and uses of
radiation.  There are no endorsements of any kind inferred by this website
list - itís just some sites offer better, more clear and understandable
information.

General Information Sites: http://hps.org/publicinformation/radfactsheets http://www.aboutnuclear.org/home.cgi http://www.uic.com.au/ral.htm http://www.iaea.or.at/worldatom/Press/Booklets/


Irradiators: http://www.food-irradiation.com/ http://www.iaea.or.at/worldatom/Press/Booklets/foodirradiation.pdf http://accelconf.web.cern.ch/AccelConf/p89/PDF/PAC1989_0153.PDF http://www.mdsnordion.com/master_dex.asp?page_id=21 http://www.mds.nordion.com/documents/Pallet_Brochure.pdf


Medial Sites:
General - http://www.wramc.amedd.army.mil/departments/nuclear/
	  - http://www.rad.washington.edu/sectionsites.html
Gamma Knife - http://www.sdgkc.com/about_gn/about_gn.htm
Medical Imaging/Diagnostics
		 - http://web.wn.net/~usr/ricter/web/imgproc.html
		 - http://www.vh.org/navigation/vh/textbooks/adult_patient_radiology.html
		 - http://www.ge.com/en/product/business/healthcare.htm
		 - http://www.biomed.org/pet.html
		 - http://www.nuc.ucla.edu/html_docs/frame_pet.html

   Treatments 	- http://www.cancer.org/docroot/ETO/ETO_1.asp
		- http://lunis.luc.edu/nucmed/tutorial/radpharm/
		- http://www.endocrineweb.com/thyroidca.html
		- http://www.iarc.fr/
		- http://www.plwc.org/plwc/


Industrial Sites: http://www.troxlerlabs.com/
		  http://www.asnt.org/learning/links.htm
		  http://www.nuc.ucla.edu/html_docs/frame_pet.html

NASA: http://kids.msfc.nasa.gov/defaultNoFlash.asp


Nuclear Power:
	 http://www.geocities.com/RainForest/Andes/6180/
	 http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/basic-ref/students.html
	 http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/basic-ref/teachers.html
		

Carbon Dating and Non-destructive Testing for Archeological purposes:
	 http://www.howstuffworks.com/carbon-14.htm
	 http://www.dc.peachnet.edu/~pgore/geology/geo102/radio.htm
	 http://vcourseware4.calstatela.edu/VirtualDating/
	 http://emuseum.mnsu.edu/archaeology/dating/index.shtml


I hope these references will assist in answering your question.  Just keep
an open mind and think of all the possibilities radiation can be used, then
search the Internet.  I just bet you may find many other uses for radiation
and radioactive materials.

If you have any additional questions, you may contact me directly at
BDB1@nrc.gov.


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