The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved a sterile bismuth-oxide-based hand lotion that offers radiation protection from x-rays.
BloXR’s Ultrablox X-ray Attenuating Cream offers protection from radiation exposure up to 130 kVp. The cream is intended to be used during medical procedures like fluoroscopy, radiography or other image-guided interventions where hands could be exposed to ionizing radiation.
Even though research indicates that the cream helps protect operators by 50 to 85 percent, the FDA cautions that the cream could pose potential risks:
- Adverse tissue reaction to health care professionals and patients because of direct contact to the skin.
- Infection risk to patients because of patient contact with contaminated or compromised cream due to glove failure.
- Radiation exposure to health care professionals due to lack of cream effectiveness, inconsistent application or because the cream’s agent may not be present in a high enough concentration to provide the amount of protection needed.
The FDA’s approval letter stipulates that the cream packaging must include a warning that the cream is not intended for use “in or adjacent to the primary x-ray beam or the transmitted beam and should not be used in lieu of a radiographic procedure glove.”