Preparing for your child's procedure

In many instances, little or no preparation is required for your child’s exam. Our specially trained radiographers will work with your child to ensure he or she is comfortable during these tests. Learn more now about what happens during:

  • X-ray
  • Fluoroscopy
  • MRI
  • Ultrasound
  • Interventional Radiology

For certain tests, you and your child will need special preparations:

Upper GI Series and Esophagram (Barium Swallow). 

During this test, we will take images while your child is drinking barium, which is a white chalky liquid, to examine how liquids move through the upper GI tract. These images may be taken while they are lying on their side or on their back.

Preparation for an UGI (NPO means Nothing to Eat or Drink):

  • 0 – 1 years of age: NPO 3 hours prior to exam
  • 1 – 2 years of age: NPO 4 hours prior to exam
  • 3 – 19 years of age: NPO 8 hours prior to exam

Modified Barium Swallow (with Speech Therapy). 

Your child will sit in a chair and will drink barium, which is a white chalky liquid.  They may drink several different consistencies. They may also eat applesauce, pudding or a cracker with barium mixed in.

Preparation for Modified Barium Swallow (NPO means Nothing to Eat or Drink):

  • 0 – 1 years of age: NPO 3 hours prior to exam
  • 1 – 2 years of age: NPO 4 hours prior to exam
  • 3 – 19 years of age: NPO 8 hours prior to exam

Small Bowel Follow Through. 

Your child will have to drink barium, which is a white chalky liquid. After your child drinks the barium, we will wait 30 minutes to take an image of the abdomen to see how far the barium has moved through the small bowel. After the initial scan, we will continue to take abdominal images approximately every 30 minutes to see the passage of the barium through the small bowel. This test can take anywhere from 30 minutes to several hours, depending on how rapidly the barium passes through.

Preparation for a Small Bowel Follow Through (NPO means Nothing to Eat or Drink):

  • 0 – 1 years of age: NPO 3 hours prior to exam
  • 1 – 2 years of age: NPO 4 hours prior to exam
  • 3 – 19 years of age: NPO 8 hours prior to exam

Barium Enema. 

Your child will have an enema tip placed into their rectum, and we will put a special contrast liquid called gastrografin into the rectum through the tube. 

Voiding Cystourethrogram (VCUG). 

Your child will have a catheter placed in their bladder.  We will run a special contrast liquid called Cysto-Conray through the catheter into the bladder.  Once the bladder is filled, we will ask the child to empty their bladder on the table.