To the Editor.–I was pleased to see a discussion about the radiation hazard to operating-room personnel during performance of operative cholangiography by Linos et al (Archives 1980;115:1431-1433). However, I disagree with their recommendation that personnel leave the operating room during roentgenographic filming or fluoroscopy. I do not believe that the scrub nurse or the surgical assistant should leave the operating room, enter an unsterile environment, then return to the operating room to continue the operation. Changing gown and gloves consumes time. Putting on lead aprons would also require gown and glove change.
The article indicates that stepping back at least 75 cm from the source of radiation should offer sufficient protection under ordinary circumstances. This can be done in most operating rooms, without having to leave the room.
Shouldn't surgical assistants and personnel be rotated through procedures in which x-rays or fluoroscopy are used, to give them added protection?