Fluoroscopy

WHAT IS FLUOROSCOPY?

Fluoroscopy is an imaging modality that uses a special X-ray machine which enables a radiologist to visualize the anatomy and function of an organ in real-time. In essence, it creates an X-ray "movie" of many body systems, including the digestive, urinary, skeletal, respiratory, and reproductive systems.

BENEFITS OF FLUOROSCOPY

Fluoroscopy is a relatively fast and safe exam in which no sedation is needed. It can often replace more invasive endoscopic procedures. Patients can return to their usual activities or go home after the procedure without the aid of another person.

At Larchmont Medical Imaging, patient safety is top priority—and that includes helping patients and their primary care clinicians manage their exposure to medical radiation for imaging exams. Click here to learn more.

TYPES OF FLUOROSCOPY PERFORMED

The most common use of fluoroscopy today is to evaluate the gastrointestinal tract, from the mouth to the rectum. The exams include barium swallows, upper GI series, small bowel follow-through series and barium exams. These exams can be helpful in assessing symptoms such as difficulty swallowing, abdominal pain, diarrhea, and constipation. It can aid in diagnosing and managing conditions such as gastroesophageal reflux, hiatal hernias, gastric ulcers, inflammatory bowel disease (including Crohn's disease) and cancer.

Fluoroscopy is often beneficial in the assessment of joints, including the wrist, elbow, shoulder, hip, knee, and ankle. The two types of fluoroscopic guided arthrograms performed depend on what is injected under fluoroscopy into the joint: either gadolinium (MRI contrast) used in conjunction with an MRI or steroids used to alleviate joint pain.

Fluoroscopy can also be used to assess the urinary system with exams including intravenous pyelograms (IVPs) and cystograms. It is also used in conjunction with OB-GYN physicians during hysterosalpingograms.

PREPARATION

The fluoroscopy preparation varies depending on exam.

Barium Swallow, Upper GI Series, Small Bowel Follow-Through Series

Day before exam:

Barium Enema

If you are diabetic & require insulin, contact your physician before starting the prep

Purchase the following from your pharmacy:

Day before exam:

Day of the exam:

Two hours before the exam:

Resume normal diet after the exam.

 

Intravenous Pyelogram (IVP)

Purchase the following from your pharmacy:

Day before exam:

Day of the exam:

ABOUT THE EXAM

Every fluoroscopic exam is different. The radiologist will explain the exam in its entirely and answer your questions before beginning the study. In general, you will be given a gown and asked to lie or stand between the X-ray machine and a fluorescent screen. During the exam, you will be given some form of contrast (oral, rectal or intravenous contrast) and you may be repositioned frequently in order for the radiologist to capture different views. The fluoroscopic images will appear on a monitor similar to a TV screen.

FOR MORE INFORMATION ON FLUOROSCOPY, PLEASE VISIT:

RadiologyInfo