The sievert (Sv) is the international unit for measuring radiation exposure.
Rem and millirem are the units used to measure radiation.
1 Sv = 100 rems
Use the radiation dose chart below as a quick reference for approximate doses.
|0.04 mSv||Approximate dose of radiation from one chest x-ray|
|0.24 mSv/year||Approximate amount of cosmic radiation acquired by individuals living at sea level|
|0.3 mSv||Approximate dose acquired by a single mammogram|
|0.4 mSv/year||Approximate amount of natural radioactivity in the body|
|0.5 mSv/year||Average amount of radiation acquired by individuals living in Denver, Colorado, US|
|1.5 to 2.5 mSv/year||Average dose US nuclear industry employess and uranium miners collect in a year (aside from medical and background doses)|
|2 mSv/year||Amount of radon acquired from living in an average home|
|2.4 mSv/year||Average background radiation acquired by people (varies depending on individual’s location)|
|9 mSv/year||Typical radiation exposure acquired by airline crew flying from New York to Tokyo via polar route|
|10 mSv||Dose of radiation from an abdomen and pelvis CT scan|
|14 mSv||Dose of radiation from a single gastrointestinal series procedure|
|20 mSv/year||Average yearly radiation dose limit for nuclear industry employees and uranium miners during usual operations|
|36 mSv/year||Dose of radiation per year of smoking 1-1/2 packs of cigarettes daily|
|50 mSv||Permissible short-term dose for emergency workers|
|50 mSv/year||Dose that workers should not exceed in a year while carrying out normal duties|
|50 mSv/year||Dose rate in natural background levels at several sites in Europe, India and Iran|
|100 mSv||Permissible short-term dose for radiation workers taking vital corrective actions|
|100 mSv||Lowest annual dose at which an increase in cancer is evident|
|100 mSv||Recommended limit for radiation workers over a five-year timeframe|
|500 mSv||Permissible short-term dose for emergency workers performing life-saving actions|
|800 mSv/year||Highest level of natural background radiation ever recorded (on a Brazilian black beach)|
|1,000 mSv||Short-term dose that causes temporary radiation sickness inccluding nausea and low white blood cell count; non-fatal|
|1,000 mSv||Short-term dose that is presumed likely to cause fatal cancer many years later in approximately 5 out of 100 people exposed to the radiation|
|4,000 mSv||Short-term dose that causes hair loss and bleeding; could be fatal within 4-6 weeks, especially if left untreated|
|5,000 mSv||Short-term dose that is fatal within a month to about 50% of the people receiving it as a whole body dose.|
|10,000 mSv||Short-term dose that is fatal within 2-4 weeks|
|30,000 mSv||Short-term dose that causes tremors and seizures; fatal within 48 hours|
Primary Sources: World Nuclear Association, Environmental Protection Agency, Radiologyinfo.org.