Lead in bone: sampling and quantitation using K X-rays excited by 109Cd.
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Lead in bone can be measured in vivo using gamma-rays from a 109Cd source to excite lead K X-rays. Normalization of lead X-ray amplitudes to that of the elastically backscattered 88 keV gamma-rays produces a determination of the concentration of lead in bone mineral that is accurate and insensitive to variations in measurement or bone geometry. For in vivo tibia measurements, a typical precision (1 SD) of +/- 5 micrograms lead (g bone mineral)-1 is achieved for an effective dose equivalent of 2.1 microSv. Measurement can be made of any superficial bone site, but precision will vary approximately as the inverse of the square root of the mass of bone mineral sampled. The apparatus required for this technique is readily transportable, and mobile laboratory facilities are easily established.
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