X-ray is the study of the internal organs and systems of the human body by projection them onto a special paper or film using X-rays.
Roentgenography is the first method of medical imaging, which allows you to get images of tissues and organs, to investigate them during human life.
This method of diagnosis was discovered in 1895 when the German physicist Wilhelm Conrad X-ray registered the property of X-rays to obscure the photographic plate.
Due to the fact that radiography involves the study of three-dimensional objects that are represented on a film flat, it is necessary to take pictures in at least two projections in order to detect the localization of the pathological focus.
The advantages of X-ray include the following:
- Ease of carrying out and wide availability;
- Lack of special training for most studies;
- Relatively low cost, with the exception of digital-derived research;
- The absence of an operator-dependence, which allows using the obtained data on consultations of various specialists.
Despite widespread, radiography has its own disadvantages:
The image is "frozen", which complicates the assessment of the function of the organ;
- Harmful effect of ionizing radiation on the organism under study;
- Low informativeness in comparison with modern tomographic methods, which is explained by projective layers of anatomical structures on an X-ray image;
- The need for the use of contrast agents in the x-ray of soft tissues.
X-ray of the chest
This method of diagnostics allows you to explore lymph nodes, blood vessels, respiratory tract, lungs, heart. Usually X-ray of the chest involves two snapshots, from the side of the chest and from the back, but in the case of a severe condition of the patient one picture is admissible.
Before this study, no special training is required, but because of the negative effects of radiation on the fetus, X-rays are not recommended during pregnancy.
X-ray of the chest is prescribed in the following cases:
- To determine the cause of coughing, shortness of breath or chest pain;
- With cardiac problems such as heart failure or enlarged heart;
- For the diagnosis of lung cancer, pneumonia, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cystic fibrosis, pneumothorax;
- To detect fractures of the ribs, lung injuries, as well as problems that cause pulmonary edema;
- For the purpose of identifying foreign objects in the lungs, respiratory tract and stomach.
X-ray of the spine
The photos taken as a result of X-ray of the spine, can determine the structure and density of bone tissue, displacement of vertebrae, the presence of erosions, to detect the inequality of contours and areas of thinning or thickening of the cortical layer of bones.
This study should be conducted in the following cases:
- For diagnostics of deformation, subluxations, fractures and displacement of vertebrae;
- In order to detect degenerative changes in the spine,
- Infectious diseases and congenital malformations;
- To assess the spine condition with metabolic disorders and arthritis;
- In order to detect lesions of intervertebral discs.
X-ray of the spine does not require any special training; it is necessary only during the study to strictly follow the instructions of the doctor, taking the necessary position on the X-ray table and delaying at some point breathing.
X-ray of the lungs
The doctor may prescribe X-ray of the lungs in the presence of symptoms such as hemoptysis, dry cough, general weakness, elevated temperature, weight loss, pain in the lungs or back. This study allows you to diagnose tuberculosis, inflammation of the lungs, tumors, or fungal diseases of the lungs, as well as detect foreign bodies. Typically, X-ray of the lungs involves receiving two pictures - with the help of anterior and lateral radiographs.
Young children during this study should be in a lying position, and the doctor, when evaluating the X-ray, should take into account the changed proportions and the features of the blood supply of the lungs in the presence of a person in the horizontal position on the back. There is no special preparation for X-ray of the lungs.
X-ray of joints
This method of diagnosis is usually used in chronic or protracted arthritis, as well as in suspected deforming osteoarthritis. In other rheumatic diseases, in most cases, X-ray of the joints can detect symptoms much later than laboratory tests or observation of the general clinical picture. However X-rays are still needed, they will allow comparing the results of further research with the initial data.
In the case of the study of symmetrical joints, the radiograph is made in direct and lateral projections, and in the diagnosis of shoulder or hip joints, one more additional projection is required - the spit. For the detection of the disease, the data of X-ray of the joints are analyzed in the following order: the outline of the articular slit - its narrowing indicates the initial stage of rheumatoid arthritis; Articular ends of bones - their bone structure, ratio, shape, size; The state of periaryticular soft tissues; Contours of the cortical layer.
When evaluating the X-ray of the joints, the clinical picture, the age of the disease and the age of the patient are taken into account.
X-ray of the skull
Surprisingly, this method is not very informative in the diagnosis of craniocerebral traumas, but at the same time, the radiography of the skull is appropriate in the following cases: in order to detect fractures of the skull; For the diagnosis of pituitary tumor; At detection of congenital malformations; For the diagnosis of some metabolic and endocrine diseases.
The doctor may refer to the radiography of the skull if there are such symptoms as loss of consciousness, dizziness, headache, and damage to the hormonal background.
Typically, this study is performed in five projections - left and right lateral, anterior, posterior, and axial.
There are no special preparations for radiography of the skull, the only requirement is the absence of any metal objects (ornaments, dentures, glasses) in the radiation zone. In addition to the listed types of radiography, the stomach and duodenum, gall bladder and biliary tract, large intestine, various parts of the peripheral skeleton, abdominal cavity, uterine cavity and patency of fallopian tubes, as well as teeth, can be investigated in the same way.