Archives for April 2011

Why You Should Protect Your Eyes From Radiation Exposure

 Did you know that exposure to x-ray radiation builds up over time ?  For doctors, technicians and hospital staff, it is extremely important to protect all areas of the body, even from the smallest exposures. One of the most important areas of the human body to protect from x-ray radiation exposure is the eyes. They are very sensitive to x-ray radiation exposure.

There are several risks with leaving the eyes unprotected from x-ray radiation exposure. At the time of unprotected x-ray radiation exposure, most people do not experience any pain.  However, it is very common to experience a dull pain in exposed tissues, including the eyes, within 1 to 3 hours of the x-ray radiation exposure. Exposure to x-ray radiation can also cause swelling and first degree burns.

One of the most damaging threats is the appearance of posterior subscapular cataracts. Posterior subscapular cataracts appear in the back of the membrane surrounding the lens of the eye. These cataracts usually progress very quickly and can lead to significant eyesight damage. Some common symptoms include decrease in eyesight sharpness and focus, loss of ability to see objects in bright sunlight and increased glare. Unfortunately, the effects of posterior subscapular cataracts occur within the first few months.

The best treatment for posterior subscapular cataracts is prevention. Requiring hospital staff, doctors and x-ray technicians to wear lead glasses is an important step to helping prevent x-ray radiation damage to the eyes. Lead glasses can greatly reduce the risk of x-ray radiation exposure to only 2-3%. When purchasing lead safety glasses, it is important to purchase lead safety glasses with a glass lens instead of a plastic lens. Glass lenses are 10 times more effective at preventing exposure to x-ray radiation than plastic lenses.

Lead glasses come in a variety of different styles and designs. In order to give doctors, technicians and hospital staff the most amount of comfort, the frames of lead glasses are adjustable and can be molded to fit a specific face. Many of the frames are also adjustable allowing for the arms of the glasses to be shortened or lengthened. These adjustments help make the glasses more comfortable and prevent them from slipping down the nose. Some lead glasses also come with side shields which provide additional protection for the eyes.

It is always important to remember that when selecting a pair of lead safety glasses, you should purchase glasses that have a lead equivalent of .75mm Pb to ensure satisfactory protection from exposure. With the substantial risks of x-ray radiation exposure, it is critical that every doctor, technician and other healthcare professionals are outfitted with lead glasses when performing an x-ray procedure.

How To Select The Right Laboratory Mixing Equipment

Purchasing laboratory mixing equipment can be an overwhelming task. In order to simplify the purchasing process, there are several purchasing requirements you should take into consideration. This post will outline the types of laboratory mixing equipment and how they are used.

There are three categories of laboratory mixing equipment. They include laboratory mixers, shakers and rockers.  In the laboratory mixers product category, the most common type of mixers are magnetic stirrers. These mixers use a strong magnet, which moves a magnetic stir bar in a flask of liquid. This mixer offers a wide variety of speeds ranging from gentle mixing to strong agitation. Magnetic stirrers also can come with a heated platform or with a non-heated platform.

If you are looking for laboratory mixing equipment that can be used for vigorously mixing, agitation or re-suspension of samples, the vortex mixer is the right selection for you. A vortex mixer moves in a circular motion and has a relatively small orbit. The vortex mixer also can operate in a continuous mode or a touch setting. There are many different product options of the vortex mixer. Some of these options include multi tube models and multi-sample temperature control units.

In the laboratory shakers category, reciprocal shakers are often used. They are designed to move back and forth along the horizontal plane. This means that these shakers push liquid from one side of the container to the other. Typically, the reciprocal shakers are used for average to vigorous mixing and blending of samples. They can also be used in sedimentation studies, which tend to use the lower speeds of this shaker.

Looking for a shaker that is ideal for cell and tissue culture work? Orbital shakers move in a circular motion along the horizontal plane. The key benefits of this shaker are it’s ability to aerate the samples and evenly distribute the cells and nutrients throughout the flask.

 A laboratory shaker similar to the orbital shaker is the incubated shaker. The design of the incubated shaker is essentially the same as the orbital shaker, except incubated shakers are enclosed and have a built in temperature control. Incubated shakers also come in a variety of different sizes including small bench top units and large, stacked floor models.

Another category of laboratory mixing equipment is laboratory rockers which include 2D and 3D rockers. 2D rockers move in a see-saw motion. They also operate at lower speeds, which is ideal for staining, de-staining, blotting and gentle mixing. 3D rockers actually move in a circular up and down motion. They can also be used for staining and blotting. Most researchers tend to rely on 3D rockers for applications where they would like to avoid the formation of foam.

After deciding what type of laboratory mixing equipment you need, you should also figure out how much space you have in your laboratory for the equipment. Laboratory mixing equipment comes in several different sizes. The larger model laboratory mixing equipment provide ample space for samples. On the contrary, smaller models are best for researchers who are short on space. We hope this post helps clarify the types and uses of laboratory mixing equipment and makes your purchasing decision a little easier!



What You Should Know About Isolation Stations

Believe it or not, about 2 million patients in the US get infections in hospitals. Unfortunately, 4.5% of these patients die from the infection. Isolation stations can actually help prevent the spread of infection by keeping a ready to use supply of personal protection equipment on hand.

So what is an isolation station? An isolation stations allow you to store your personal protection equipment, which usually includes hospital gowns, gloves and face masks.

They provide several benefits:

  • Organizes your personal protection equipment.
  • Easily mountable, which saves space in already cramped areas.
  • Highly visible and convenient.
  • Help hospitals comply with Occupational Safety and Health Administration guidelines and hospital preparedness requirements.

Before purchasing an isolation station, it is important to measure the sizes of the personal protection equipment that you will be storing in the station. 

In most cases, isolation stations typically provide you with the dimensions of the glove boxes, lab coat pockets and mask pockets, which makes it easy for you to determine whether or not the organizer is a good fit for your personal protection equipment. It is also important to consider how you plan to mount the isolation station. They can be mounted with over-the-door hangers, j hooks or with a standard wall mount.

Most isolation stations are made from a durable high impact plastic which ensures years of constant use. This type of high impact plastic allows the isolation station to easily be moved and relocated as needed. As mentioned above, isolation stations work to prevent the spread of infection in the work place and are an easy to install, convenient product, that provides the personal protection equipment you need to protect your staff and patients easily. How are you storing your personal protection equipment?