Skip to main content

Radiation Sickness

Archana Kudrimoti, MD, MBBS, MPH and Jennifer M. Courtier, MD Reviewed 06/2019
 


BASICS

Radiation sickness, or acute radiation syndrome (ARS), is defined as an acute illness caused by radiation of most or all of the body with a relatively high dose of radiation over a short period...

DIAGNOSIS

Strong index of suspicion and knowledge of radiation event 

HISTORY

  • Exposure to known source of radiation

    • Damaged radioisotope-containing medical equipment

    • Industrial sources

    • Nuclear power plan...

TREATMENT

  • High-quality, randomized, controlled studies of therapeutic interventions for ARS are not available. Guidelines for treatment are from consensus panels based on reviews of reported incidents...

ONGOING CARE

FOLLOW-UP RECOMMENDATIONS

Isolation techniques for immune system injury 

Patient Monitoring

  • Daily CBC with differential: platelet, granulocyte, and lymphocyte counts

  • Stool for occult blood

  • Vit...

REFERENCES

1
Coeytaux K, Bey E, Christensen D, et al. Reported radiation overexposure accidents worldwide, 1980–2013: a systematic review. PLoS One.  2015;10(3):e0118709. [View Abstract on OvidMed...

ADDITIONAL READING

  • Bui E, Joseph B, Rhee P, et al. Contemporary management of radiation exposure and injury. J Trauma Acute Care Surg.  2014;77(3):495–500. [View Abstract on OvidMedline]

  • Centers f...

CODES

ICD10

T66.XXXA Radiation sickness, unspecified, initial encounter 

ICD9

990 Effects of radiation, unspecified 

SNOMED

  • 370402009 Radiation sickness (disorder)

  • 360002 Acute radiation disease (disorder)

CLINICAL PEARLS

  • Radiation interactions with atoms can result in ionization and the formation of free radicals that damage tissue by disrupting chemical bonds and molecular structures in the cell, incl...

Subscribe to Access Full Content

Sign Up for a 10-Day Free Trial

Sign up for a 10-day FREE Trial now and receive full access to all content.

×