Different body tissues absorb this Xray radiation differently. So what is seen on an Xray film is actually the radiation waves that managed to penetrate through the body!
There are many medical uses for Xrays. Most people are familiar with the xray used to diagnose a broken bone. But over time, doctors have learnt to use Xrays on practically every part of the body.
Of course, Xrays have their limitations. They are best used to image solid structures, because soft tissues frequently produce vague shadows & patterns on an Xray. Even then, these vague patterns can still help in disease diagnosis.
These are Xrays taken of the chest area. This is a general screening test to look at the rib cage, lung fields, & heart shadow.
Much can be learnt through a chest xray alone. The heart size, lung fields, rib cage, & parts of the spine are all visible – these give a quick impression to the general health of an individual.
Diseases screened for includes:
a. infections including tuberculosis (TB) b. tumours / cancer c. collapse of lung d. heart failure e. heart enlargement f. curvature of spine (scoliosis) g. rib fractures h. etc.
As a health screening tool, it is indispensable. Hence its ubiquitous presence in statutory medical examination.
ABDOMINAL / KUB XRAY
These are Xrays of the abdominal area. Sometimes they are called “KUB” (kidney – ureters – bladder) xrays because they include these organs.
Although less often used compared to the chest Xray, they still serve an important purpose of screening for kidney / urinary tract stones – because 90% of such stones are estimated to be visible on Xrays.
SKELETAL / BONE XRAY
Xrays of the bones & joints are familiar to most people. Usually for diagnosis of fractures, they are also used to assess joint fitness – indirectly by looking at the spaces between the joints, as well as the quality of the adjoining bones.
Routine screening of articulating joints includes the knees, hips, lower back, & the neck.
If you have any persistent ache or pain over any of your joints, let us know. A simple joint Xray may be all you need to diagnose the underlying problem.