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Head Clamps for Skull Radiography
Skull radiography technique can be a challenging part of radiography. Children in particular find the experience distressing and can strongly resist your attempts at positioning. The skull clamps were designed to assist the radiographer to immobilise the patient's head during skull radiographyHistory
The design was based on a similar device used at the Adelaide Women's and Children's Hospital in Australia. The designer of the original head clamps is unknown.
The patient is placed supine on the X-ray table. The head clamps are positioned on either side of the skull and light pressure is applied. Once the head clamps are engaged it is very difficult for the patient to move his/her head. The sponge tends to mould to the shape of the patient's skull. The skull clamps should not be used with patients who have temporal injuries or with patients who are likely to cause blood staining to the foam.
The head clamps can be used passively to assist the patient to remain in the true AP position. Simply place the clamps next to the patient's head during the X-ray exposure.
The radiographers use the skull clamps as a cassette holder for horizontal ray projections. When placed with the foam downwards (in contact with the X-ray table), the head clamp tends to hold in place and provides a vertical surface to position a cassette against. It is noteworthy that the head clamps are very heavy which assists them to stay in position.Radiation Protection
The head clamp PVC is laminated with a lead sheet. This serves to protect the radiographer's hands as well as to make the clamps heavy enough to stay in place.
The head clamps are made of grey PVC, lead sheet and open cell foam. Countersunk stainless steel bolts are used as fixings (not shown in pictures above).
The head clamps are a useful addition to the radiographer's toolkit. The head clamps shown above are home-made and so should be within the capabilities any engineer or plastics fabricator. The foam is custom cut with a computer controlled foam cutter.
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Latest page update: made by M.J.Fuller
, Jul 25 2009, 5:31 AM EDT
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