Health Physics

Skip Navigation LinksHome > May 2011 - Volume 100 - Issue 5 > PATIENT SAFETY AND ELECTROMAGNETIC PROTECTION: A REVIEW
Health Physics:
doi: 10.1097/HP.0b013e3181f0cad5
Review Article


Carranza, Noemí*; Febles, Víctor; Hernández, José A.; Bardasano, José L.; Monteagudo, José L.*; Fernández de Aldecoa, José C.; Ramos, Victoria*

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A systematic literature review was carried out to study patient security and possible harmful effects, immunity and interferences on medical devices, and effectiveness and transmission problems in healthcare and hospital environments due to electromagnetic interferences. The objective was to determine already-reported cases of patient security, immunity of medical devices, and transmission/reception failure in order to evaluate safety and security of patients. Literature published in the last 10 years has been reviewed by searching in bibliographic databases, journals, and proceedings of conferences. Search strategies developed in electronic databases identified a total of 820 references, with 50 finally being included. The study reveals the existence of numerous publications on interferences in medical devices due to radiofrequency fields. However, literature on effectiveness, transmission problems and measurements of electromagnetic fields is limited. From the studies collected, it can be concluded that several cases of serious interferences in medical instruments have been reported. Measures of electromagnetic fields in healthcare environments have been also reported, concluding that special protective measures should be taken against electromagnetic interferences by incoming radio waves.

©2011Health Physics Society


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