Being a radiation worker is hard!
I saw a question in one of the groups I belong to on Facebook. The group talks about common topics, issues faced by medical physicists. The question was: What is the worst part of your job as medical physicist? How do you handle it?
This question as a matter of fact can be posed to not just medical physicists but radiation workers in general. Of course, MRI physicists excluded from this concern, but here’s my answer. I believe living with a constant fear in your mind that you are dealing with radiation is the worst part of being a radiation worker. Granted, As low as reasonably achievable (ALARA) principles ensure that your chance of getting a cancer due to occupational radiation dose is minimal, or next to nothing or no worse than what environmental radiation give you.... and of course, your employer is protected, because they've ensured they have a dose monitoring program. This ought to be the worst part of being a radiation worker. The way one handles it is, in your mind you park that fear, burry it deep down and move on... you live with it EVERY DAY... just don't think about it and go about doing your work. You pick up that germanium source, you handle the Flurodeoxyglucose (FDG) in your hands as if its no different than a life saving glucose saline. You pickup that Technetium 99source as if its no hotter than a griddle you made your omelet on that morning!
There has to be a better way to deal with this fear than hanging your Dosimeter on your chest, pretending it to be a shield that it is not! My employer is covered from all liabilities. I know… what can I do? I need this job. I guess, dosimeter is good enough. I have full faith in science (or do I?).. …Stay tuned for more on this topic!