Derivation of site-specific skeletal masses within the current ICRP age series

Christopher J. Watchman, Deanna Hasenauer, Wesley E. Bolch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


The calculation of absorbed dose to the radiosensitive tissues of the skeleton is routinely performed using reference masses provided in publications from the International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP). These values typically include total skeleton tissue masses by reference subject age, but not by individual bone site at a given age. Site-specific variations in absorbed fractions are known to occur for internal alpha-particle and beta-particle emitters, and in certain medical dose reconstructions, site-specific estimates of marrow dose may be desirable. Furthermore, bone-site-specific tissue masses are required to properly estimate skeletal-averaged absorbed fractions and, more importantly, specific absorbed fractions for internalized radionuclides and radiopharmaceuticals. Reference masses by skeletal site are also needed in the development of ICRP compliant tomographic phantoms, as this organ system is initially segmented from medical images only as a homogeneous tissue region. ICRP reference skeletal masses are assigned based upon several independent data sources, many of which may not be entirely consistent with one another. In this study, a methodology is presented, using data from the various ICRP publications, to derive site-specific skeletal tissue masses for each member of the ICRP age series. Active marrow masses are calculated and differences are shown with respect to ICRP Publications 70 and 89 values. New data for a revised surrogate tissue region for the osteoprogenitor cells within bone marrow is presented with estimates of its total mass throughout the skeleton and for different subject ages.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number014
Pages (from-to)3133-3150
Number of pages18
JournalPhysics in medicine and biology
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jun 7 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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