A professor at the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center has developed a new device that can be used to test radiation exposure checking the radiation levels in the tooth enamel.
Known as an electron paramagnetic resonance dosimeter, the device has been developed by Dr Harold Swartz who hoped that it will be used to accurately check the amount of exposure that the Japanese people living around the Fukushima Nuclear Plant that has been destroyed in the recent earthquake and tsunami tragedy.
Dr Swartz revealed that while the device is still in the research stage, a prototype copy has been shipped to Japan. Doctors can check the radiation levels by making the patients bite on a mouthpiece and rest their head on some padding.
Dr Swartz's colleague, Dr Ben Williams said that checking for radiation levels in the enamel is one of the most reliable ways of accurately finding how much a person has been exposed to radiation.
"The changes in the tooth enamel caused by radiation are permanent. They don't change over time. So that allows us to make these measurements at any time after the exposure", he said.