What is a X-Ray?
An x-ray (radiography) is a painless medical test that helps physicians diagnose and treat medical conditions. An x-ray image is produced when a small amount of ionizing radiation passes through the body. The ability of x-rays to penetrate tissues and bones varies according to the tissue’s composition and mass. Bone, which contains calcium, does not let much radiation through and results in white images on the x-ray film. The lungs, which are filled with air, allow nearly all x-rays to strike the film resulting in a black film image. Chest x-rays are the most common radiologic exam.
Preparing for an X-Ray
General Radiology (X-ray) is offered on a walk-in basis, with no appointment necessary. A written order from your doctor is required. Generally, for plain x-rays, there is no preparation. If you are pregnant or nursing, you must notify your technologist.
Depending on the area of your body to be x-rayed, you may need to change into a gown upon arrival. When you have an x-ray, it usually requires at least two views of the body part to be taken. Occasionally, multiple views are taken. Therefore, the process can take anywhere from 5 to 30 minutes to complete.