Articles

Articles are a collaborative effort to provide a single canonical page on all topics relevant to the practice of radiology. As such, articles are written and edited by countless contributing members over a period of time. A global group of dedicated editors oversee accuracy, consulting with expert advisers, and constantly reviewing additions.

13,381 results found
Article

Wrist (horizontal beam lateral view)

The horizontal beam lateral wrist view is a modified lateral projection when performing the three view series of the wrist and carpal bones in trauma. It is the orthogonal projection of the PA wrist without any patient movement, making it the most appropriate projection for patients in pain. Pa...
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Wrist (lateral view)

The lateral wrist view is part of a three view series of the wrist and carpal bones. It is the orthogonal projection of the PA wrist. Patient position patient is seated alongside the table the affected arm if possible is flexed at 90° so the arm and wrist can rest on the table abduct the hum...
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Wrist ligaments

The intrinsic and extrinsic wrist ligaments play a vital role in the stability of the wrist joint. There are numerous ligaments but included below are the most clinically significant. Wrist ligaments are best assessed with dedicated wrist MRI. Gross anatomy intrinsic ligaments (only attach to ...
Article

Wrist (oblique view)

The oblique wrist view is part of a three view series of the wrist and carpal bones. It is not generally performed in follow-up studies unless specifically requested. Patient position patient is seated alongside the table the affected arm if possible is flexed at 90° so the arm and wrist can ...
Article

Wrist (PA view)

The PA wrist view is part of a three view series of the wrist and carpal bones. Although performed PA the view can often be referred to an AP view. Patient position patient is seated alongside the table the affected arm if possible is flexed at 90° so the arm and wrist can rest on the table ...
Article

Wrist (radial deviation view)

The wrist PA radial deviation view is specialized projection employed to better demonstrate the carpal bones that lay on the ulnar aspect of the wrist. Patient position patient is seated alongside the table the affected arm if possible is flexed at 90° so the arm and wrist can rest on the tab...
Article

Wrist radiograph

Wrist radiographs are ubiquitous in the emergency departments. They are commonly performed in the pediatric and elderly populations after a fall on an outstretched hand as well as in patients after higher force trauma. Moreover, they may be performed as part of a skeletal survey looking for meta...
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Wrist radiograph (an approach)

Wrist radiographs are ubiquitous on any night of the week in emergency departments, especially when pavements are icy! Choosing a search strategy and using it consistently is a helpful method to overcome common errors seen in diagnostic radiology. Systematic review Distal radial contour Check...
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Wrist radiograph (approach)

Wrist x-rays are commonly used for the assessment of the wrist following trauma. This is usually a fall onto an outstretched hand. Systematic review It is useful to have a systematic approach; I tend to start proximally and work distally looking at structures on both views together: distal ra...
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Wrist radiograph (summary approach)

This is a basic article for medical students and other non-radiologists Wrist radiographs are commonly used for the assessment of the wrist following trauma.  Summary approach alignment AP distal radius and ulna have smooth joint surface carpal arcs are smooth carpal bones do not overlap ...
Article

Wrist series

The wrist series is comprised of a posteroanterior, oblique, and lateral projection. The series examines the carpal bones that are consisting of the scaphoid, lunate, triquetrum, pisiform, trapezium, trapezoid, capitate and hamate. It also examines the radiocarpal and distal radiocarpal joint al...
Article

Wrist series (summary)

This is a basic article for medical students and other non-radiologists A wrist series (or wrist x-ray) may be performed for a multitude of reasons. However, they are most commonly used in the assessment of trauma, by clinical teams within the Emergency Department or Orthopedic service. Refere...
Article

Wunderlich syndrome

Wunderlich syndrome is a rare condition, in which spontaneous nontraumatic renal hemorrhage occurs into the subcapsular and perirenal spaces 2. Clinical presentation Wunderlich syndrome is clinically characterized by Lenk's triad: acute flank pain flank mass hypovolemic shock Pathology Et...
Article

Wyburn-Mason syndrome

Wyburn-Mason syndrome (also known as Bonnet-Dechaume-Blanc syndrome) is a rare, nonhereditary neurocutaneous disorder that typically presents with unilateral vascular malformations that primarily involve the brain, orbits and facial structures. It is currently classified as a craniofacial arteri...
Article

Xanthogranulomatous cholecystitis

Xanthogranulomatous cholecystitis (XGC) is an uncommon inflammatory disease of the gallbladder which may be difficult to differentiate from malignancy, both on imaging and pathologically. It is characterized by presence of multiple intramural nodules. Epidemiology It is seen predominantly in f...
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Xanthogranulomatous pyelonephritis

Xanthogranulomatous pyelonephritis (XGP) is a rare form of chronic pyelonephritis and represents a chronic granulomatous disease resulting in a non-functioning kidney. Radiographic features are usually specific. Epidemiology Xanthogranulomatous pyelonephritis is seen essentially in all age gro...
Article

Xanthomatous meningioma

Xanthomatous meningiomas are rare histological variants of meningiomas grouped into the subtype of metaplastic meningiomas, being WHO grade I tumors. They are characterized by cells with a lipid-filled vacuolated cytoplasm. Although reported numbers are too small to confirm that this is definit...
Article

XCCL view

An XCCL view is a supplementary mammographic view. It is a type of exaggerated cranio-caudal view. It is particularly good for imaging the lateral aspect of the breast.  It is often done when a lesion is suspected on a MLO view but cannot be seen on the CC view. In this view, the lateral aspect...
Article

XCCM view

An XCCM view is a supplementary mammographic view. It is a type of exaggerated cranio-caudal view. It is particularly good for imaging the medial portion of the breast. In this view, the medial portion of the breast is placed forward. A negative 15° tube tilt is suggested. An optimal XCCM view ...
Article

Xenon-127

Xenon-127 is a radiopharmaceutical principally used when a performing VQ scan. It is not a widely used alternative to xenon-133 with the main advantage being a higher proton energy allowing for post perfusion scanning.  photon energy: 203 KeV physical half life: 36.3 days
Article

Xenon-133

Xenon-133 is a radiopharmaceutical principally used when a performing VQ scan. Inhalation of this gas can also be used to assess cerebral blood flow. photon energy: 81 KeV physical half-life: 5.27 days biological half-life: 30 seconds normal distribution: lungs <15% of inhaled gas is absorb...
Article

Xerostomia

Xerostomia is the medical term for a dry mouth, and is most commonly due to hyposalivation. Epidemiology Xerostomia is the most frequently observed salivary abnormality in clinical practice 1. Clinical presentation dryness of the mouth uncomfortable swallowing vocalisation difficulties: to...
Article

Xiphisternal joint

The xiphisternal joint (or more rarely, the sternoxiphoid joint) is a symphysis between the inferior margin of the body of the sternum and the superior margin of the xiphoid process. In most people it ossifies with age, usually becoming fully fused by the age of 40 years, forming a synostosis.  ...
Article

Xiphisternum

The xiphisternum (also known as the xiphoid process or simply the xiphoid) is the smallest of the three parts of the sternum (manubrium, body or gladiolus, and xiphisternum). It arises from the inferior and posterior margin of the sternal body and projects inferiorly. It is a small cartilaginous...
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Xiphoid shape variations

There is considerable anatomic variation in the shape of the xiphoid of the sternum: xiphoid ending is classified as single, double, or triple. xiphoid size varies (e.g. elongated process) xiphoid morphology (e.g. ventral or dorsal deviation, hook-like, reverse S-shape). Clinical presentatio...
Article

X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy

X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy is an inherited metabolic peroxisomal disorder and one of the more common leukodystrophies in both children and adults. It is characterized by a lack of oxidation of very long chain fatty acids (VLCFAs) that results in severe inflammatory demyelination typically of ...
Article

X-linked Opitz G/BBB syndrome

X-linked Opitz G/BBB syndrome (XLOS) is an x-linked disorder with a spectrum of congenital anomalies. Anomalies that may be seen are: facial anomalies  ocular hypertelorism prominent forehead widow's peak broad nasal bridge anteverted nares cleft lip and/or palate  laryngotracheoesophage...
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X-marks-the-spot sign (large bowel volvulus)

The X-marks-the-spot is a sign of complete bowel volvulus and refers to the crossing loops of the bowel at the site of the transition. It has been reported to improve diagnostic confidence in detecting cecal and sigmoid volvulus. This is in contrast to the split-wall sign which indicates partial...
Article

X-ray artifacts

X-ray artifacts can present in a variety of ways including abnormal shadows noted on a radiograph or degraded image quality, and have been produced by artificial means from hardware failure, operator error and software (post-processing) artifacts.  There are common and distinct artifacts for fi...
Article

X-ray film

X-ray film displays the radiographic image and consists of emulsion (single or double) of silver halide (silver bromide (AgBr) is most common) which when exposed to light, produces a silver ion (Ag+) and an electron. The electrons get attached to the sensitivity specks and attract the silver ion...
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X-ray interaction with matter

X-rays in the diagnostic range interact with matter primarily via two major processes, which are fundamental in understanding how an image is formed in a radiographic exam. These processes are the: photoelectric effect  Compton scatter 
Article

X-ray production

X-rays are produced due to sudden deceleration of fast-moving electrons when they collide and interact with the target anode. In this process of deceleration, more than 99% of the electron energy is converted into heat and less than 1% of energy is converted into x-rays. Definitions Generator ...
Article

X-ray quantity and quality

X-ray photon quantity refers to the number of photons produced during an exposure. Factors influencing x-ray quantity includes: peak voltage (kVp): beam quantity is approximately proportional to the square of the tube potential generator type/voltage waveform: reducing ripple increases beam q...
Article

X-rays

X-rays (or much more rarely, x-radiation) represent a form of ionizing electromagnetic radiation. They are produced by an x-ray tube, using a high voltage to accelerate the electrons produced by its cathode. The produced electrons interact with the anode, thus producing x-rays. The x-rays produc...
Article

X-ray tube

An x-ray tube functions as a specific energy converter, receiving the electrical energy and converting it into two other forms of energy: x-radiation and heat. Heat is considered the undesirable product of this conversion process; therefore x-radiation is created by taking the energy from the el...
Article

Yasargil classification of vein of Galen aneurysmal malformations

The Yasargil classification is one of the two common systems for classifying vein of Galen malformations that is currently in use at the time of writing (mid 2016).  Classification type I: small pure cisternal fistula between the vein of Galen (voG) and either the pericallosal arteries (anteri...
Article

Yaws

Yaws, also known as framboesia, is a tropical disease produced by the Treponema pallidum subspecies pertenue. Epidemiology Yaws is a tropical disease. Infections have declined dramatically over the last century, however the disease is still present in several countries in Africa and Asia 1. Y...
Article

Yellow nail syndrome

The yellow nail syndrome (YNS) is a rare disorder principally affecting the lymphatic system. It is characterized by a clinical triad: nail discolouration: yellow slow-growing dystrophic nails (scleronychia) lymphedema (peripheral/primary) pulmonary disease: see yellow nail syndrome (pulmona...
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Yellow nail syndrome (pulmonary manifestations)

Pulmonary manifestations of yellow nail syndrome are principally centered around chronic cough effects for recurrent lung infections (bronchiectasis) and pleural effusions. The role of proposed lymphatic impairment could account for the development of pleural effusions and smooth interlobula...
Article

Yin-yang sign (solitary fibrous tumor)

The yin-yang sign is a radiologic appearance described in solitary fibrous tumor of the dura on MR. On T2-weighted images, these tumors have two separate solid components, one that is hyperintense and one that is iso- to hypointense relative to brain parenchyma. Histologically, the former repre...
Article

Yin-yang sign (vascular)

The yin-yang sign, also known as the Pepsi sign, is a radiological sign described in both true and false aneurysms on various imaging modalities. Radiographic features Ultrasound On Doppler ultrasound, the yin-yang sign indicates bidirectional flow due to the swirling of blood within the true...
Article

Yolk sac

Yolk sac is the first anatomical structure identified within the gestational sac. It plays a critical role in embryonal development by providing nutrients, serving as the site of initial hematopoiesis, providing endocrine, metabolic and immunological functions and contributing to the development...
Article

Young and Burgess classification of pelvic ring fractures

The Young and Burgess classification is a modification of the Tile classification 1. It is the recommended 5 and most widely used classification system for pelvic ring fractures. It takes into account force type, severity, and direction, as well as injury instability. Anteroposterior compress...
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Young's modulus

Young's modulus is a relationship between elasticity, strain, and stress: elasticity x (change in length / original length) = (force / area) put another way, this is elasticity x (strain) = stress or elasticity = stress / strain Elasticity is measured in kilopascals (kPa). This relationsh...
Article

Young syndrome

Young syndrome shares similar clinical and radiological findings to primary ciliary dyskinesia and cystic fibrosis, however, the underlying pathogenesis is yet to be fully elucidated. Obstructive azoospermia at the level of the epididymis is thought to be the cause of infertility. The commonly r...
Article

Yo-yo on a string sign

The yo-yo on a string sign denotes the characteristic appearance of the torn, proximally retracted and superficially displaced ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) due to a Stener lesion. Mechanism The sign occurs as a consequence of the tear of the ulnar collateral ligament of the thumb (gamekeepe...
Article

Yo-yo reflux

Yo-yo reflux or uretero-ureteral reflux is noted in partial duplication of ureters 1,2. It is the reflux of urine from normal caliber ureter to dilated ureter.  Radiographic features Yo-yo reflux should be suspected when there is asymmetric dilatation of ureters. It can be diagnosed with color...
Article

Y sign (epidural lipomatosis)

The Y sign refers to a common appearance in lumbar epidural lipomatosis where excess fat in the extradural space compresses the dural sac into the shape of the letter "Y". 
Article

Yunis-Varón syndrome

Yunis Varón syndrome is a rare skeletal dysplasia. It is thought to be autosomal recessive. Radiographic features severe neurologic impairment cleidocranial dysplasia absent clavicles macrocrania diastasis of sutures micrognathia absent thumbs and distal phalanges of fingers hypoplasia ...
Article

Zabramski classification of cerebral cavernous malformations

The Zabramski classification of cerebral cavernomas has been proposed as a way of classifying cerebral cavernous malformations, and although not used in clinical practice it is useful in scientific publications that seek to study cavernous malformations. The classification was proposed in 1994 ...
Article

Z deformity

The Z deformity is one of the musculoskeletal manifestation of rheumatoid arthritis in hand: radial deviation at the wrist ulnar deviation of the digits, and often palmar subluxation of the proximal phalanges
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Zebra sign (cerebellum)

The zebra sign has been termed to describe the finding of layering of blood in amongst the folia of the cerebellum, particularly in the setting of remote cerebellar hemorrhage.1 This type of hemorrhage is characterized by a streaky pattern, like a zebra's stripes, due to blood spreading in the ...
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Zebra spleen

Zebra spleen, also referred to as psychedelic spleen or more correctly inhomogeneous splenic enhancement, refers to the transient heterogeneous parenchymal enhancement of the spleen during the arterial or early portal venous phases of contrast enhancement in CT, MRI, or ultrasound imaging. It i...
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Zebra stripes

Zebra stripes/artifacts appear as alternating bright and dark bands in a MRI image. The term has been used to describe several different kind of artifacts causing some confusion. Artifacts that have been described as a zebra artifact include the following: Moire fringes 1,2 Zero-fill artifact...
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Zebra stripe sign (bones)

The zebra stripe sign occurs where children with osteogenesis imperfecta have been treated with cyclical bisphosphonate therapy, e.g. pamidronate. When the drug is delivered in cycles, dense bone is formed while treatment is being given. This results in dense stripes across the metaphyses of bon...
Article

Zellweger syndrome

Zellweger syndrome (ZS), also known as the cerebrohepatorenal syndrome, is a multisystem metabolic abnormality. As the name implies it primarily affects the central nervous system, liver and kidneys.  Epidemiology The condition typically presents in neonates with poor feeding and/or seizures. ...
Article

Zenker diverticulum

Zenker diverticulum, also known as a pharyngeal pouch, is a posterior outpouching of the hypopharynx, just proximal to the upper esophageal sphincter through a weakness in the muscle layer called the Killian dehiscence. Epidemiology More than 50% of the affected patients present in 60-80 years...
Article

Zero fill artifact

Zero fill artifact is one of many MRI artifacts and is due to data in the K-space array missing or set to zero during scanning. The abrupt change from signal to no signal results in artifacts in the images showing alternating bands of shading and darkness, often in an oblique direction. A spike...
Article

Zero filling interpolation

Zero filling interpolation (ZIP) is the substitution of zeroes for unmeasured data points in order to increase the matrix size of the new data prior to Fourier transformation of MR data. This results in pixels smaller than the actual resolution of the image. The zero filling occurs in the periph...
Article

Zika virus infection

Zika virus infection is a zoonosis which is associated with congenital birth defects, most infamously microcephaly. Epidemiology Zika was once isolated to Africa and Asia, however, it spread to the Americas in the last decade 1. There were thousands of cases confirmed in the Americas in 2018 2...
Article

Zimmerman-Laband syndrome

Zimmerman-Laband syndrome is a rare congenital syndrome, characterized primarily by gingival hypertrophy and skeletal abnormalities.  Pathology The molecular basis of the syndrome is currently unknown. An autosomal dominant mutation with a high mutation rate and rare instances of germinal mosa...
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Zinc

Zinc (chemical symbol Zn) is a trace element with a key role as a constituent of enzymes, e.g. carbonic anhydrase, and as part of zinc finger proteins, vital for the correct folding of macromolecules, such as DNA. More recently zinc has been found to act as an important cellular messenger 3. Ba...
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Zinc toxicity

Zinc toxicity (also rarely known as zincalism) is rare as the body is remarkably efficient at excreting excess zinc. Typically oral zinc poisoning manifests primarily as: acute GI symptoms: vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain secondary copper deficiency zinc competes with copper for absorption...
Article

Zinner syndrome

Zinner syndrome is a triad of mesonephric (Wolffian) duct anomalies comprising unilateral renal agenesis, ipsilateral seminal vesicle cyst, and ejaculatory duct obstruction 1. Clinical presentation Patients are typically diagnosed during the 3rd or 4th decade of life and often present with per...
Article

Zipper artifact

In MR imaging, zipper artifact refers to a type of MRI artefact where one or more spurious bands of electronic noise extend perpendicular to the frequency encode direction and is present in all images of a series.         There are various causes for zipper artifacts in images. Most of them are...
Article

Zollinger-Ellison syndrome

Zollinger-Ellison syndrome (ZES) is a clinical syndrome that occurs secondary to a gastrinoma.  Clinical presentation Diagnosis of ZES is often delayed by 5-7 years after the onset of symptoms 2.  Pathology Gastrinomas are usually multiple and typically located in the duodenum (more common) ...
Article

Zona orbicularis

The zona orbicularis are circular fibers of the hip joint capsule and form a collar around the femoral neck. Though partly blended with the pubofemoral and ischiofemoral ligaments, these fibers are not directly attached to bone. 
Article

Z-score

Z-scores are a way to translate individual data points into terms of a standard deviation.  Z = (X - Xbar) / σ X: individual data point Xbar: the arithmetic mean σ: the standard deviation The purpose of the Z-score is to allow comparison between values in different normal distributions. Two...
Article

Zuckerkandl tubercle

Zuckerkandl tubercles are the projections of normal thyroid tissue from the posterior or posteromedial margin of the thyroid gland that extend posterior to the tracheoesophageal groove. They are present in most patients and occur more commonly on the right and in the longitudinal center 50% of t...
Article

Zuelzer-Wilson syndrome

Zuelzer-Wilson syndrome, also known as total colonic aganglionosis, is a subset of Hirschsprung disease, in which the whole colon is aganglionic. Epidemiology It is uncommon and accounts for 2-13% of cases of Hirschsprung disease 3,7. Compared with Hirschsprung disease which has a marked male ...
Article

Zurich pituitary score

The Zurich pituitary score (ZPS) is a quantitative classification of pituitary adenomas based on coronal T1W magnetic resonance imaging with contrast, although the score can also be obtained with computed tomography. The ZPS is based on the ratio (R) between horizontal tumor diameter over inter...
Article

Zygoma

The zygoma (also known as zygomatic bone or malar bone) is an important facial bone which forms the prominence of the cheek. It is roughly quadrangular in shape. Gross anatomy Zygoma has three surfaces, five borders, and two processes. Surfaces anterolateral surface is convex, pierced at its...
Article

Zygomatic arch

The zygomatic arch is formed by the union of the temporal process of the zygomatic bone and the zygomatic process of the temporal bone at the zygomaticotemporal suture.  Related pathology Le Fort type 3 fracture zygomaticomaxillary complex fracture
Article

Zygomatic nerve

The zygomatic nerve is a main branch of the maxillary division of the trigeminal nerve. It should not be confused with the zygomatic branch of the facial nerve. Gross anatomy The zygomatic nerve divides off the maxillary division just after emerging from the foramen rotundum to enter the ptery...
Article

Zygomaticofacial foramen

The zygomaticofacial foramen is a small foramen in the mid lateral surface of the zygomatic bone that transmits the zygomaticofacial nerve (a branch of the zygomatic nerve from the maxillary division of the trigeminal nerve) and zygomaticofacial vessels.
Article

Zygomaticofacial nerve

The zygomaticofacial nerve is the smaller of the two branches of the zygomatic nerve, from the maxillary division of the trigeminal nerve. It is sometimes referred to as the malar branch of the zygomatic nerve. It leaves the inferolateral aspect of the extraconal space of the orbit through the z...
Article

Zygomaticomaxillary complex fracture

Zygomaticomaxillary complex (ZMC) fractures, also known as tripod, tetrapod, quadripod, malar or trimalar fractures, are seen in the setting of traumatic injury to the face. They comprise fractures of the: zygomatic arch inferior orbital rim, and anterior and posterior maxillary sinus walls l...
Article

Zygomaticomaxillary suture

The zygomaticomaxillary suture is between the zygomatic process of the maxilla and the maxillary process of the zygomatic bone. They are often involved in zygomaticomaxillary complex (ZMC) fractures.
Article

Zygomaticotemporal foramen

The zygomaticotemporal foramen is a small foramen in the anteromedial surface of the zygomatic bone that transmits the zygomaticotemporal nerve (a branch of the zygomatic nerve from the maxillary division of the trigeminal nerve) and zygomaticotemporal vessels.
Article

Zygomaticotemporal nerve

The zygomaticotemporal nerve is the larger of the two branches of the zygomatic nerve, from the maxillary division of the trigeminal nerve. It is primarily sensory but also relays parasympathetic fibers to the lacrimal nerve from the pterygopalatine ganglion which reach the lacrimal gland. It le...
Article

Zygomaticus major

Zygomaticus major is a member of the buccolabial muscle group of the upper lip1. It joins with the fibers of levator anguli oris, orbicularis oris and the more deeply placed muscular bands to move the side of the mouth upwards and sideways during facial movements such as laughing. Summary orig...
Article

Zygomaticus minor

Zygomaticus minor is a member of the buccolabial muscle group. Together with levator labii superioris alaeque nasi and levator labii superioris it is one of the main elevators of the lip, exposing the maxillary teeth 1. Along with its other action of deepening and elevating the nasolabial furro...

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