An X-ray is a common painless test that produces images of the structures inside your body — particularly your bones and other tissues in the body.
X-ray beams pass through your body, and they are absorbed by the tissues in the body depending on the density of those tissues. Dense materials, such as bone, show up as white on X-rays while less dense areas such as air in your lungs shows up as black. Fat and muscle appear as shades of gray.
At Open Imaging we have invested in the latest Digital Radiology (DR) equipment available. This DR system allows us to produce X-rays using the smallest amount of radiation possible.
Our new DR system has at least twice (2X) the dose efficiency of older Computed Radiology (CR) systems or that of traditional X-ray film. Ultimately this results in lower doses to the patient and more accurate X-rays.
Why Is an X-ray Performed?
Your doctor may order an X-ray to:
- examine an area where you’re experiencing pain or discomfort
- monitor the progression of a diagnosed disease, such as osteoporosis
- determine the healthiness of organs such as lungs etc.
Preparing For an X-ray
Plain X-rays are standard procedures that likely will not require any preparation. You may want to wear loose, comfortable clothing that you can easily move around in. If needed, we may ask you to change into comfortable scrubs at our center. We will also have you remove any jewelry or other metallic items from your body in the area where your X-ray will be taken.
Please inform us if you are pregnant or think you might be pregnant.
How Is the Procedure Performed?
Our X-ray technologist will tell you where to sit and how to position your body to create the most detailed and accurate images possible. We may ask you to lie, sit, or stand in several positions during the test. If you are having a chest X-ray we will ask you to stand in front of a specialized plate that contains a specialized X-ray sensor. It’s important to stay still while the images are being taken and hold your breath if asked. This will provide the clearest images possible.
Risks of an X-ray Exam
Some people worry that X-rays aren’t safe because radiation exposure may cause cell mutations leading to cancer. The amount of radiation you are exposed to during an X-ray is very minimal and depends on the X-ray exam being performed.
Radiation exposure from an X-ray is low, and the benefit from these tests far outweigh the risks. Open Imaging has invested in the latest technology that minimizes the amount of radiation used so that the risk is kept to an absolute minimum.
However, if you’re pregnant or suspect that you may be pregnant, please inform us before having an X-ray. If necessary we can consult with your doctor to determine if other tests might result in less risk to the fetus.