Handheld x-ray devices becoming popular – How to remain in compliance

header-plain-logoThe Kansas Department of Health and Environment issued an informational notice regarding handheld x-ray units, commonly referred to under the brand name NOMAD, last week for dentists who might be using or considering their use in dental practices in Kansas.
There has been an increased interest in selling and the use of hand held x-ray units in Kansas.  This email is being sent to inform registrants concerning the use of hand held units in Kansas.  The following Information Notice has been developed to help registrants who are considering purchasing a handheld x-ray device to remain in compliance with the Kansas Radiation Protection Regulations.


According to the email sent from Scott Bangert, Environmental Scientist in the Asbestos & X-ray Compliance Unit of the Bureau of Environmental Health to all medical, dental, and veterinary x-ray registrants in Kansas,  the use of handheld x-ray devices are not allowed under the regulations without a waiver from the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, Bureau of Environmental Health’s Radiation and Asbestos Control Section.  According to Kansas Radiation Protection Regulation #28-35-135(t) ‘‘Portable X-ray equipment’’ means X-ray equipment designed to be hand-carried.

  • Kansas Radiation Protection Regulation #28-35-244a(i) Tube stands for portable X-ray systems. A tube stand or other mechanical support shall be used for portable X-ray systems, so that the X-ray tube housing assembly does not need to be handheld during exposures.
  • Kansas Radiation Protection Regulation #28-35-274a(h) (2) The tube housing and the position indication device (PID) shall not be handheld during an exposure.
  • Kansas Radiation Protection Regulation #28-35-242 (a) Waiver of requirements. Compliance with the specific requirements of these regulations relative to an existing machine or installation may be waived by the secretary if the registrant provides an alternative to the requirement that provides radiation protection equal to that prescribed in part 4 of these regulations.

KDHE is aware there are several handheld x-ray devices on the market.  Only one company currently has requested and been granted a waiver for the device to be handheld.  If you are considering purchasing a handheld device contact our office at (785) 296-1560 to determine if the device is in compliance with our regulations.

Kansas Radiation Protection Regulations may be found at: www.kdhe.state.ks.us/radiation/regs.html

Paper copies may be received by calling (785) 296-1560.