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News / April 12, 2013

Irish dentists on alert over X-ray units

by Guy Hiscott

Dentists in Ireland have been warned about a cut-price handheld dental X-ray machine that poses a significant health risk to patients and operators.
The Tianjie Dental Falcon – available from its Chinese manufacturer via the internet for around €250 – is not shielded properly, meaning it gives off around 10 times the normal amount of radiation. The machine’s X-ray beam is too wide, which means a patient’s whole skull and brain is exposed to radiation rather than just their mouth.
Poor wiring also means the unit poses an electrical shock and fire risk.
At least one dental practice in England has been found using the device, and 13 have been seized at a distribution centre.
It is unclear whether any of the devices have made it to Ireland yet but the Irish Dental Association (IDA) is monitoring the situation.
Any dentist in possession of one of the units should contact the IDA, or the Medicines and Healthcare Regulatory Agency (MHRA) at