X-ray procedures

X-rays can help physicians diagnose broken bones, diagnose lung diseases, examine the intestinal tract and other internal body systems.

X-ray - routine procedures

Routine x-rays include x-rays of the skull, chest, abdomen and extremities that do not require injections or contrast material of any kind.

Preparation
  • You should plan to spend about an hour in the Radiology Department for your exam.
  • If you are an outpatient, please be at the X-ray admissions office at least 15 minutes prior to your exam time.
  • Wear loose, comfortable clothing that can be easily removed.
  • You may eat, drink and take any medication as normal.
Procedure
  • You may be asked to remove your clothing and put on a hospital gown.
  • The technologist will explain the procedure to you, and you will be allowed to ask any questions you may have.
  • Your exam may be performed with you lying down on the x-ray table, or with you in a standing or sitting position.
  • The technologist will position you and ask you to hold very still.
  • You may or may not be asked to hold your breath.
After the exam
  • The results of your exam will by reported to your physician within 24 hours.

If you have any further questions, please call the Radiology Department at 256.218.3850.

Arthrogram
Purpose

An arthrogram is done to evaluate the soft tissues (cartilage, ligaments, etc.) of a joint.

Preparation
  • You should plan to spend one to two hours at the hospital for your exam.
  • If you are an outpatient, please be at the X-ray admissions office at least 15 minutes prior to your exam time.
  • Wear loose, comfortable clothing that can be easily removed.
  • You may eat, drink and take any medication as normal.
Procedure
  • You may be asked to remove your clothing and put on a hospital gown.
  • The technologist and radiologist will explain the procedure to you, and you will be allowed to ask any questions you may have.
  • You will lie down on the x-ray table.
  • The radiologist will insert a needle into the joint space, where he will inject a small amount of contrast and air.
  • You will then be asked to exercise the joint for a few minutes to help distribute the contrast and air into and around the soft tissues of the knee joint.
  • The radiologist will take several x-ray pictures of the joint in various positions.
After the exam
  • You may continue your normal activities.
  • The results of your exam will be reported to your physician within 24 hours.

If you have any further questions, please call the Radiology Department at 256.218.3850.

Cystogram
Purpose

A cystogram is an x-ray exam of the urinary bladder to look for abnormalities.

Preparation
  • You should plan to spend one to two hours in the department for your exam.
  • If you are an outpatient, please be at the X-ray admissions office at least 15 minutes prior to your exam time.
  • You may eat, drink, and take any medication as normal.
  • Wear loose, comfortable clothing that can be easily removed.
Procedure
  • You will be asked to remove your clothing and put on a hospital gown.
  • The technologist will explain the procedure to you and answer any questions you may have.
  • You will be asked to lie down on the x-ray table.
  • A nurse will insert a small tube into your bladder.
  • The radiologist will come into the room and use the x-ray machine to watch as your bladder is filled by contrast material.
  • When your bladder feels very full, you should tell the radiologist.
  • X-ray pictures will be taken.
After the exam
  • You may resume your normal activities.
  • The results of your exam will by reported to your physician within 24 hours.

If you have any further questions, please call the Radiology Department at 256.218.3850.

Gallbladder or repeat GB X-ray
Purpose

A gallbladder x-ray is done to evaluate the gall bladder for function, gallstones and other disease processes.

Preparation
  • Your physician will write you a prescription for Telepaque tablets. These are available at most pharmacies, but they can also be picked up at the main admissions desk at Jackson County Hospital.
  • These tablets should be taken on the night prior to the scheduled exam, according to the instructions on the packet.
  • You should not eat anything after taking the tablets, but you may drink water up until midnight. Do not drink anything after midnight until your exam is completed.
  • Your exam will require about one hour in the Radiology Department.
  • If you are an outpatient, you should be in the X-ray admissions office 15 minutes prior to the exam.
  • You should wear loose, comfortable clothing that can be easily removed.
Procedure
  • You will be asked to remove your clothing and put on a hospital gown.
  • The technologist will explain the procedure to you and answer any questions you may have.
  • You will be asked to lie down on the scan table.
  • A plain x-ray will be made of the area of your gallbladder.
  • X-rays will also be made of your gallbladder, while you are in a standing position.
  • Sometimes the gallbladder may not concentrate the contrast from the Telepaque tablets well enough for the gallbladder to be adequately examined. If this happens, you may be asked to repeat the schedule of Telepaque tablets again and return to the Radiology Department on the next day.
After the exam
  • You may resume your normal activities and diet.
  • If you need to have a repeat exam, the technologist will explain the procedure to you, give you the second round of Telepaque tablets and schedule a time for you to return the next day.
  • The results of your exam will by reported to your physician within 24 hours.

If you have any further questions, please call the Radiology Department at 256.218.3850.

IVP
Purpose

An intravenous pyelogram (IVP) can help to identify and locate cysts, stones, tumors and other abnormalities in the urinary system, including the kidneys, ureter and bladder.

Preparation
  • You may be asked to remove your clothing and put on a hospital gown.
  • You will be directed to take a laxative the night prior to the exam.
  • Do not eat or drink anything after midnight prior to the exam.
  • You will be asked to empty your bladder before the procedure begins.
  • You will need to have an IV started on you for the exam.
  • You should plan on spending one to two hours in the Radiology Department for your exam.
  • If you are an outpatient, please be at the X-ray admissions office 15 minutes prior to your scheduled exam time.
Procedure
  • You will be asked to complete a Radiology patient history form that will ask questions concerning allergies and other medical history. Based on your medical history, you may have to have a blood sample drawn for lab work prior to the exam.
  • You will be asked to lie down on the x-ray table, and you will be made as comfortable as possible.
  • The contrast medium will be injected into your arm. You may experience a warm flush and a metallic taste.
  • X-rays will be taken at specific intervals.
  • You may be told to empty your bladder again at some point during the exam, so that another X-ray can be taken for comparison.
  • You should report any of the following sensations to the technologist performing the exam: itchiness or hives, shortness of breath or nausea.
After the exam
  • You may resume your normal activities and diet.
  • You should drink lots of water, fruit juices or other liquids.
  • The results of your exam will be reported to your physician within 24 hours.

If you have any further questions, please call the Radiology Department at 256.218.3850.

Upper G.I. Series
Purpose

The upper G.I. series is used to examine the esophagus, stomach and the first part of the small intestine. This exam can help identify ulcers, tumors, obstructions, inflammations, etc. The exam will require a minimum of one hour.

Preparation
  • Do not eat or drink anything after midnight prior to the exam.
  • You should plan to spend one to two hours in the Radiology department for your exam.
  • If you are an outpatient, please be at the X-ray admissions office 15 minutes prior to your scheduled exam time.
Procedure
  • You may be asked to remove your clothing and put on a hospital gown.
  • The exam will usually begin with the x-ray table in a standing position.
  • You may be asked to swallow a small medicine cup full of crystals that will produce air bubbles in your stomach. You should try to keep this air in your stomach.
  • You will be asked to drink a barium solution while the radiologist watches you swallow. The barium solution looks like a milkshake and is usually flavored.
  • The x-ray table will then be tilted down into a flat position so that you will be lying down.
  • The radiologist will ask you to turn in various directions and lie in several different positions during the course of the exam, so that x-ray pictures of your stomach can be taken.
  • You will be asked to drink more of the barium solution from a lying position, so that your esophagus can be examined.
After the exam
  • You should take a laxative to prevent constipation.
  • You should drink lots of fluids.
  • The results of your exam will be reported to your physician within 24 hours

If you have any further questions, please call the Radiology Department at 256.218.3850.

Small Bowel Series
Purpose

A small bowel series is an x-ray exam of the small intestine. This exam can identify inflammation, tumors, obstructions, or other abnormalities of the small bowel. This exam is frequently done in conjunction with an upper GI series but not always.

Preparation
  • You should plan to spend one to three hours in the Radiology Department for your exam.
  • If you are an outpatient, please be at the X-ray admissions office at least 15 minutes prior to your exam time.
  • Wear loose comfortable clothing that can be easily removed.
  • You should not eat or drink anything for four hours prior to the exam.
Procedure
  • You may be asked to remove your clothing and put on a hospital gown.
  • The technologist will explain the procedure to you, and you will be allowed to ask any questions you may have.
  • You will be given two or three cups of a thick, milkshake-like substance called barium to drink.
  • X-rays will be taken at intervals to track the barium as it travels through the small bowel and until it reaches the large bowel (or colon).
After the exam
  • You may resume your normal activities and diet.
  • You should drink lots of fluids for the rest of the day.
  • You should take a laxative to prevent constipation.
  • The results of your exam will by reported to your physician within 24 hours.

If you have any further questions, please call the Radiology Department at 256.218.3850.

Barium swallow (esophagus)
Purpose

The barium swallow is ordered to evaluate the esophagus, which is the passage from the mouth to the stomach. A barium swallow is often done in conjunction with an upper GI series.

Preparation
  • Do not eat or drink anything for two to four hours prior to the study.
  • You should plan to spend one to two hours in the Radiology department for your exam.
  • If you are an outpatient, please be at the X-ray admissions office 15 minutes prior to your scheduled exam time.
Procedure
  • You may be asked to remove your clothing and put on a hospital gown.
  • The exam will usually begin with the x-ray table in a standing position.
  • You may be asked to swallow a small medicine cup full of crystals that will produce air bubbles in your stomach. You should try to keep this air in your stomach.
  • You will be asked to drink a barium solution while the radiologist watches you swallow. The barium solution looks like a milkshake and is usually flavored.
  • The x-ray table will then be tilted down into a flat position, so that you will be lying down.
  • You will be asked to drink more of the barium solution from a lying position, so that your esophagus can be examined.
After the exam
  • You should take a laxative to prevent constipation.
  • You should drink lots of fluids.
  • The results of your exam will be reported to your physician within 24 hours.

If you have any further questions, please call the Radiology Department at 256.218.3850.

Barium Enema or Air Contrast Barium Enema
Purpose

The barium enema is used to evaluate the colon, which may also be called the large intestine or bowel. This study can detect cancer, polyps, diverticulae (pouches in the colon), inflammation and other changes in the colon.

Preparation
  • It is essential that your colon be completely empty and clean to facilitate the successful completion of this exam. If your colon is not clean enough, you may be given a second round of laxatives and your exam rescheduled for the next day.
  • You will be placed on a low residue diet and asked to drink extra fluids on the day prior to the scheduled exam.
  • You will be given a laxative to take on the day prior to the exam.
  • Do not eat or drink anything after midnight prior to the exam.
  • You will be given a suppository on the morning of the exam.
  • You should plan to spend one to two hours in the radiology department for your test.
  • If you are an outpatient, please be at the X-ray admissions office 15 minutes prior to your scheduled exam time.
Procedure
  • You will be asked to remove your clothing and put on a hospital gown.
  • You will be asked to lie down on the x-ray table.
  • A small enema tip will be gently inserted into your rectum.
  • Barium will flow through the enema tip into your colon while the radiologist watches on the fluoroscope. You may feel the urge to have a bowel movement. Sometimes air is also put through the tube into the colon to help outline the colon better. To help prevent this feeling, you can breathe slowly and deeply through your mouth and try to relax as much as possible.
  • You will be instructed to hold still and hold your breathe at different times while x-ray pictures are taken. You will be asked to turn in various directions and also to lie on your stomach during the course of the exam.
  • You will be allowed to go to the bathroom to empty your bowel after these pictures are taken.
  • You may be asked to lie back down on the x-ray table afterwards for a “post-evacuation” film.
After the exam
  • You should drink lots of fluids.
  • You may resume your normal activities and diet.
  • Exam results will be reported to your physician within 24 hours.

If you have any further questions, please call the Radiology Department at 256.218.3850.

Percutaneous Nephrostomy
Purpose

A percutaneous nephrostomy is done to insert a tube through the skin into the kidney. This procedure allows the kidney to drain when it is obstructed and cannot drain normally. This procedure is also done to allow a Urologist to perform certain surgical procedures that require this opening into the kidney.

Preparation
  • You should plan to spend two to four hours in the Radiology Department for your exam.
  • If you are an outpatient, please be at the X-ray admissions office at least 15 minutes prior to your exam time.
  • Wear loose comfortable clothing that can be easily removed.
  • You should not eat or drink anything after midnight on the night prior to the study.
Procedure
  • You will be asked to remove your clothing and put on a hospital gown.
  • The technologist and radiologist will explain the procedure to you, and you will be allowed to ask any questions you may have.
  • You will be asked to sign a form giving your permission for this procedure.
  • You will lie down on the x-ray table on your stomach.
  • A series of x-ray pictures will be made to localize the kidney.
  • After a site has been chosen, the radiologist will clean the area thoroughly with betadine.
  • You will be given a small injection of xylocaine in the skin to deaden the area where the needle will be inserted. You will feel a stinging sensation as this injection begins.
  • The long, small caliber needle will then be inserted with x-rays done during the insertion process to monitor the angle and depth of the needle. You may feel pressure at the insertion site, but you should not feel any pain.
  • After the needle is in the correct place, it will be used as a guide to insert the catheter (small tube) into the kidney.
  • When the procedure is complete, the catheter will be secured in place.
  • What happens at that point will be dependent upon what your physician or Urologist needs.
After the exam
  • The radiologist or the Urologist will give you specific instructions.
  • You will be monitored for any bleeding or other complications.

If you have any further questions, please call the Radiology Department at 256.218.3850.

Hystosalpingogram
Purpose

A hystosalpingogram is an exam done to examine the fallopian tubes for obstruction.

Preparation
  • You should plan to spend one to two hours at the hospital for your exam.
  • If you are an outpatient, please be at the X-ray admissions office at least 15 minutes prior to your exam time.
  • Wear loose, comfortable clothing that can be easily removed.
  • You may eat, drink and take any medication as normal.
Procedure
  • You will be asked to remove your clothing and put on a hospital gown.
  • The technologist will explain the procedure to you, and you will be allowed to ask any questions you may have.
  • You will lie down on the x-ray table.
  • Your Gynecologist or the Radiologist will insert a tube through the vaginal canal, in order to inject contrast material into the fallopian tubes. This procedure will be uncomfortable but should not painful for you.
  • A series of x-ray pictures will be made to complete the exam.
After the exam
  • You may resume your normal activities.
  • The results of your exam will by reported to your physician within 24 hours.

If you have any further questions, please call the Radiology Department at 256.218.3850.

T-Tube Cholangiogram
Purpose

In certain surgical situations, a small tube called a T-Tube is inserted in the common bile duct (the passage between the liver and the small bowel) to allow for drainage of the bile. This tube comes through the skin and is attached to a small bag on the outside of the abdomen. A T-Tube Cholangiogram is an x-ray procedure done a few days after gallbladder surgery to check the common bile duct for stones or obstruction. You may still be a patient in the hospital or you may have gone home and come back as an outpatient for this procedure.

Preparation
  • You should plan to spend one to two hours in the Radiology Department for your exam.
  • If you are an outpatient, please be at the X-ray admissions office at least 15 minutes prior to your exam time.
  • Wear loose, comfortable clothing that can be easily removed.
  • You may eat, drink and take any medication as normal.
Procedure
  • You may be asked to remove your clothing and put on a hospital gown.
  • The technologist and Radiologist will explain the procedure to you, and you will be allowed to ask any questions you may have.
  • You will lie down on the x-ray table.
  • The radiologist will inject contrast material through the T-Tube, while he watches on the x-ray monitor. Several x-ray pictures will be taken during the procedure.
After the exam
  • You may resume your normal activities.
  • The results of your exam will by reported to your physician within 24 hours.

If you have any further questions, please call the Radiology Department at 256.218.3850.

Myelogram
Purpose

A myelogram is a special x-ray exam done to evaluate the spinal canal for abnormalities.

Preparation
  • You should plan to spend one to two hours in the Radiology Department and six to eight hours in the hospital for your exam.
  • If you are an outpatient, please be at the X-ray admissions office at least 15 minutes prior to your exam time.
  • Wear loose comfortable clothing that can be easily removed.
  • The day before the exam, you will need to drink large amounts of fluids, such as fruit juice, soft drinks and water.
  • You may eat a light breakfast the morning of the exam.
Procedure
  • You may be asked to remove your clothing and put on a hospital gown.
  • The technologist and Radiologist will explain the procedure to you, and you will be allowed to ask any questions you may have.
  • You will be asked to sign a consent form in order for the myelogram to be done.
  • You will lie down on the x-ray table.
  • A local anesthetic will be used, and you should feel only some pressure in the area where the Radiologist is working.
  • The Radiologist will perform a spinal tap, and some of the spinal fluid will be drawn and sent to the laboratory for tests.
  • Then a water-soluble contrast material will be injected into the spinal column, and x-rays will be taken.
  • It is usually necessary for a C.T. scan of the lumbar spine to be done after the myelogram, while the contrast is still in the spinal canal.
After the exam
  • You will be given instructions as to when you can resume your normal activities.
  • You should drink lots of fluids for the rest of the day.
  • The results of your exam will be reported to your physician within 24 hours.

If you have any further questions, please call the Radiology Department at 256.218.3850.

Needle Biopsy/Abscess Drainage
Purpose

In cases of known cysts, abscesses or areas of the body that may require a drainage or biopsy procedure, the area can be localized, in order to insert a long, small caliber needle into the structure to obtain tissue samples or drain the fluid out of the structure.

Preparation
  • If you are an outpatient, please be at the X-ray admissions office 15 minutes prior to your scheduled exam time.
  • You should plan to spend two to four hours in the Radiology department for your exam.
  • You should wear loose, comfortable clothing.
  • You should not eat or drink anything for two to four hours prior to the exam.
Procedure
  • You will be asked to remove your clothing and put on a hospital gown.
  • The technologist and the Radiologist will explain the procedure and any possible complications to you.
  • You will be asked to sign a permit for the procedure to be done.
  • You will be asked to lie down on the scan table.
  • A series of x-ray pictures will be made to localize the area that is to be biopsied or drained.
  • After a site has been chosen, the Radiologist will clean the area thoroughly with betadine.
  • You will be given a small injection of xylocaine in the skin to deaden the area where the needle will be inserted. You will feel a stinging sensation as this injection begins.
  • The long, small caliber needle will then be inserted, with x-rays done during the insertion process to monitor the angle and depth of the needle. You may feel pressure at the insertion site, but you should not feel any pain.
  • After the needle is in the correct place, the fluid (for drainage procedures) or the tissue (for biopsy) will be removed through the needle.
  • After the drainage or biopsy is complete, the needle will be removed.
After the exam
  • The radiologist will give you specific instructions about resuming your normal activities.
  • You may be asked to remain in the department for 30 minutes up to 2 hours after the procedure, so that you can be monitored for any bleeding or other complications

 

Highlands Imaging Center

Highlands Imaging Center
Phone: 256.218.3850