MEDECOR—A MEDICAL DECORPORATION TOOL TO ASSIST FIRST RESPONDERS, RECEIVERS, AND MEDICAL REACH-BACK PERSONNEL IN TRIAGE, TREATMENT, AND RISK ASSESSMENT AFTER INTERNALIZATION OF RADIONUCLIDES
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After a radiological dispersal device (RDD) event, it is possible for radionuclides to enter the human body through inhalation, ingestion, and skin and wound absorption. From a health physics perspective, it is important to know the magnitude of the intake to perform dosimetric assessments. From a medical perspective, removal of radionuclides leading to dose aversion (hence risk reduction) is of high importance. The efficacy of medical decorporation strategies is extremely dependent upon the time of treatment delivery after intake. The "golden hour," or more realistically 3-4 h, is optimal when attempting to increase removal of radionuclides from extracellular fluids prior to cellular incorporation. To assist medical first response personnel in making timely decisions regarding appropriate treatment delivery modes, it is desirable to have a software tool that compiles existing radionuclide decorporation therapy data and allows a user to perform simple diagnosis leading to optimized decorporation treatment strategies. In its most simple application, the software is a large database of radionuclide decorporation strategies and treatments. The software can also be used in clinical interactive mode, in which the user inputs the radionuclide, estimated activity, route of intake and time since exposure. The software makes suggestions as to the urgency of treatment (i.e., triage) and the suggested therapy. Current developments include risk assessment which impacts the potential risk of delivered therapy and resource allocation of therapeutic agents. The software, developed for the Canadian Department of National Defence (DND), is titled MEDECOR (MEdical DECORporation). The MEDECOR tool was designed for use on both personal digital assistant and laptop computer environments. The tool was designed using HTML/Jscript, to allow for ease of portability amongst different computing platforms. This paper presents the features of MEDECOR, results of testing at a major NATO exercise, and future development of this tool into MEDECOR2.
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