Dedicated accessories are provided by Sirtex to meet the general principles of radiation safety and to assist in the handling of SIR-Spheres® Y-90 resin microspheres. The vial containing the dose for each patient is packaged in an acrylic v-vial holder, which is designed to be seated in the acrylic box provided. A syringe shield is also provided for preparing the dose.
Yttrium-90 has two inherent safety features for staff and patients. These are:
- the minimal penetration depth of beta radiation emissions through tissue and air
- the relatively short half-life of 64.1 hours
As the emission from yttrium-90 is high-energy beta, shielding is best provided with a low atomic number material such as acrylic. Acrylic shielding also reduces the amount of Bremsstrahlung radiation produced. In addition, acrylic is optically clear and permits the physician to continually observe the product and procedure.
Once the patient has received the implant, they effectively become the radiation source. However, patients pose very limited radiation risk to medical staff, family, friends, and the public due to minimal tissue penetration and emissions of the beta radiation. Some general precautions should be observed, and local regulations may over-ride these general guidelines.
Please see SIR-Spheres Y-90 resin microspheres Package Insert and Training Manual for more detailed information.