Running head: Evaluation of products and technologies assignment Evaluation of products and technologies assignment Virtual High School Grade 12 Chemistry – SCH4U 1
Running head: Evaluation of products and technologies assignment The modernization of medicine and the accelerated pace of technological development has led us to the creation of highly effective treatments and procedures which not only cure individuals but ensure that these people achieve high standards of life and comply with all their needs. This progress would not have been possible was it not for the interdisciplinary works that has been done throughout generations of scientists and researchers. Products of such revolution is the concept of Radioactive tracers. The concept originated from the discovery of radioactivity in 1911 by Marie Curry, which has served until modern day medicine where PET scans and Topography techniques are way beyond the capacity of X-rays machines, all due to the characteristics of the elements. However, not all development has been free of cost, there have been many sacrifices done by nature and society in order to satisfy the human race for its wellbeing. Therefore, this essay is going to evaluate the environmental and social benefits and costs of using Radioisotopes in the field of medicine, specifically radioisotope fluorine-18. To completely comprehend the implications that are present in the utilization of radioactive tracers and how they are being used in medicine, we must understand first what a radioactive isotope is. An isotope is a variant of an element’s atoms which differs from the original neutron number causing its physical character to change but possesses the same chemical characteristics due to electron constancy. 5 Furthermore, a radioisotope is an isotope with a tendency to emit radiation through the nucleus, either be it by energy waves or minute particles such as neutrinos. The aforementioned characteristic is key to understanding why and how radioactive isotopes are being utilized in the field of medicine, specifically to prevent invasive and resource consuming surgeries. In short, the radioactivity is measured in different zones in the body once a radioactive tracer is present inside an individual, and irregular flow of such in certain areas is an indicator of diseases such as cancer or cardiac malfunction. 5 The previous statement will be further explored in this essay to understand the chemical basis of radioactive isotopes.
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