General X-Ray

Radiography involves using a small amount of x-ray energy to produce images of the body. Discovered in the late 1800’s, radiography has become the most widely used form of imaging the human body, helping physicians diagnose and treat medical conditions. More recently, x-rays have become digitalized, allowing the radiologist to view images on a computer screen.

What are some uses for X-Ray?

General x-ray includes the evaluation of the chest, spine, hips, abdomen, skull and extremities.

  • A chest x-ray may be used to detect abnormalities such as an enlarged heart, TB, pneumonia and other various illnesses affecting the lungs.
  • A spinal x-ray may be used to evaluate conditions such as: fractures, curvature of the spine (scoliosis) and degenerative changes associated with the aging process (arthritis).
  • An abdominal x-ray can show the presence of air or fluid in the abdomen, the size and shape of the abdominal structures and calcifications such as stones (renal calculi) that may be present in the urinary tract.
  • An x-ray of the extremities can show fractures or any other bony abnormalities that may be present.

What must I do in order to prepare for the exam?
There is no special preparation required for most general x-rays. You may be asked to change into a gown in order to remove any radiopaque objects that may appear within the area being radiographed. (i.e. jewelry, eyeglasses, hairpins, dentures, clothing with buttons, snaps, zippers, etc).

What is involved in having an x-ray?
Two or more x-rays can be taken depending on the part of the body that is being radiographed. You will be asked to remain still and may have to hold your breath during the brief exposure. This will guarantee that your images will be free from motion and help produce a good quality image.