The Future of Radiological Protection


Radiation Detriment Calculation Methodology: Review of Current Non-Radiation-Related Parameters and Perspectives

Author(s): Ludovic Vaillant 1, Michiaki Kai 2, Michael Hauptmann 3
( 1 CEPN, France; 2 Oita University, Japan; 3 Institute of Biostatistics and Registry Research, Brandenburg Medical School Theodor Fontane)


Health effects associated with ionising radiation exposure are classified into two categories: harmful tissue reactions and stochastic effects. The impact of stochastic effects is reflected by the radiation detriment, whose calculation is based on the sum of lifetime risk from several cancers weighted by the severity of these cancers, and integrates the possibility of heritable effects.

The detriment concept was elaborated on in ICRP Publication 60 (ICRP, 1991) and revised in ICRP Publication 103 (ICRP, 2007). Detriment calculation methodology needs to be revised to reflect the evolution of scientific knowledge.

Detriment calculation methodology is a two-step process (Clero et al, 2019). The first step aims at calculating nominal risk coefficients for a set of organs and tissues. The second step, based on judgement concerning lethality, quality of life, and years of life lost, allows to define relative detriment for each organ and tissue and, finally, the radiation detriment as a sum of relative detriments.

This presentation focuses on the second step of the calculation of radiation detriment. It provides a presentation of the methodology and parameters used to calculate relative detriments, starting from nominal risk coefficients. It will highlight, for the current methodology and potential needs to update parameter values. Sensibility of the calculation to the different parameters will be reviewed (Zhang et al, 2020). Additionally, an alternative way to integrate the concept of Disability-Adjusted Life Years (DALY) into detriment calculation will be discussed.


  • ICRP Publication 60 1990 Recommendations of the International Commission on Radiological Protection, Ann. ICRP 21 (1-3), 1991
  • ICRP Publication 103 The 2007 Recommendations of the International Commission on Radiological Protection, Ann. ICRP 37 (2-4), 2007
  • History of radiation detriment and its calculation methodology used in ICRP Publication 103, E. Clero et al., Journal of Radiological Protection, August 2019.
  • Sensitivity analysis of parameters and methodological choices used in calculation of radiation detriment for solid cancer, W. Zhang et al., International Journal of Radiation Biology, May 2020

Keywords: Detriment calculation; Non radiation related parameters; DALY