Monday, December 8, 2008

A Glowing Report

I’ve had a considerable amount of radiation exposure the last year.

The radiation treatment I received right after my diagnosis was every day for three weeks. That’s a pretty short time frame, but my radiation was very intense and localized: my upper spine and ribcage, and one particular spot on my ribs: the source point for the pain that caused me to seek help originally.

I’ve also had an MRI, several CT scans, the PET scan, 2-3 chest x-rays, something called a Long Bone x-ray. Plus a flock of dental x-rays last spring before I started on Zometa, my bone-strengthening drug.

I’m confident my docs wouldn’t have ordered the scans and x-rays without good cause. What they needed to learn was important enough to my treatment that the risk of added exposure was mitigated. I accept all this as necessary; I don’t question their decisions. But every once in a while I see something that gives me pause, that creates a new perspective.

Marie Curie's laboratory papers are still so radioactive that they're kept in lead-lined boxes.
Researchers who consult them must agree to work at their own risk.

I found it here, but I can’t find a source beyond to verify it:
Her research papers have to be 100 years old, or older, and they're still dangerously radioactive. Hmmm.

Unrelated note: In fourth or fifth grade, I read a little biography about Marie Curie. Discovered radioactivity, blah, blah. What impressed me was that she was so obsessed with her research, she often forgot to eat. I was dumbstruck -- I had no frame of reference for such odd behavior.


Michelle said...

I have never understood people who "forget" to eat. NEVER!! And I promise to tell you if I ever notice that you are glowing or anything.....

La Cootina said...

Thanks, M. I've given up on bronzers - they just turn me orange - so if you see me glowing, it's probably not a good thing. ;D