When most people think of radiology, they think of X-rays. These scans safely use external radiation to develop images of the body, its organs and other internal structures to diagnose bone injuries, tumors and other disorders in the chest, musculoskeletal system and abdomen.
When the body undergoes X-rays, different parts of the body allow varying amounts of the X-ray beams to pass through. The body’s soft tissues (such as blood, skin, fat and muscle) allow most of the X-ray to pass through and appear dark gray on the film. A bone or tumor, both of which are denser than soft tissues, allows fewer X-rays to pass through and appears white on the film. When you have a broken bone, the X-ray beam passes through the broken area and appears as a dark line in the white bone.
X-ray technology is also used in other types of diagnostic tests and procedures, such as interventional radiology, computed tomography (CT) scans and fluoroscopy.
Our experienced team includes radiographers and radiologists who are specially trained in performing and reading X-ray scans. We are the only radiology service in the region to have fully accredited radiographers and board-certified, subspecialty-trained radiologists on staff.
Our leading-edge digital technology ensures that we can obtain the highest detail scans at the lowest possible X-ray dose to ensure patient safety.
Preparing for Your Procedure
X-rays can be performed on an outpatient basis or as part of inpatient care.
Before your exam:
Radiation during pregnancy may lead to birth defects. Always tell your radiographer or physician if you suspect you may be pregnant.
During your exam:
1. You will be asked to remove any clothing or jewelry that might interfere with the exposure of the body area to be examined. You will be given a gown to wear if clothing must be removed.
2. You will sit or lie down on an X-ray table that carefully positions the part of the body that is to be X-rayed between the X-ray machine and a cassette containing the x-ray film. Some examinations may also be performed with the patient in a standing position. Body parts not being imaged may be covered with a lead apron (shield) to avoid X-ray exposure.
3. The X-ray beam will be focused on the area to be photographed.
4. You must be very still or the image will be blurred.
5. The radiographer will step behind a protective window and the image is taken.
6. Depending on the body part under study, various X-rays may be taken at different angles, such as the front and side view during a chest X-ray.