RE: [Histonet] sentinel biopsies


I wrote my own policy but referenced that I received the radiation
information from the Hospital Radiation Safety officer.
We do the same as Dr. Peters here.  The Radiation Safety officer (which is a
Radiologist here) said we were in no danger.
The only thing he suggested and I have it in my procedure is to have any
pregnant histotechs avoid handling the fresh sentinel nodes just as a
precautionary measure.

Hope this helps,

-----Original Message-----
From: Horn, Hazel V [] 
Sent: Thursday, September 01, 2005 2:36 PM
To: Stephen Peters M.D.;
Subject: RE: [Histonet] sentinel biopsies

In getting ready for my CAP inspection, CAP states there must be a
policy for these types of specimens.   My question to all of you is, who
wrote your policy?   Did you write it or did your Radiation Safety
Officer write it? 

Hazel Horn, HT/HTL (ASCP)
Histology Supervisor
Arkansas Children's Hospital
800 Marshall      Mail Slot 820
Little Rock, AR   72202
phone- 501.364.4240
fax- 501.364.3912
visit us on the web at:

-----Original Message-----
[] On Behalf Of Stephen
Peters M.D.
Sent: Thursday, September 01, 2005 1:46 PM
Subject: [Histonet] sentinel biopsies

This is a difficult question. Our advisors in radiation here assure us the
dose is quite minimal and does not require precautions. They say the
exposure is similar to walking down the street ( I am guessing the street is
next to a nuclear facility). We handle these as routine specimens,  cut
frozens and take no special percautions. Below is a consensus article from
the Association of Directors of Anatomic and Surgical Pathology that covers
this topic. 
This article recommends a variety of precautionary steps.  
Fitzgibbons, P, et al. Recommendations for Handling Radioactive Specimens

by Sentinal Node Biopsy
The American Journal of Surgical Pathology 24(11):1549 -155, 2000. 
I do not have a good answer to this question. I would hate to see people
taking a lot of  unnecessary precautions, on the other hand, I hope my other
hand doesn't fall off!

Stephen Peters M.D. 
Vice Chairman of Pathology
Hackensack University Medical Center
201 996 4836
Pathology Innovations, LLC
410 Old Mill Lane,
Wyckoff, NJ 07481
201 847 7600 

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