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.

407 results found
Article

20° oblique projection

20° oblique projection is a troubleshooting projection used in mammography, especially in young women and in follow-up patients. Technique The C-arm is turned approximately 20° for a superomedial-inferolateral oblique. With the patient's feet pointing towards the unit and her torso turned slig...
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3D fast spin echo (MRI sequence)

3D fast spin-echo sequences are relatively recent MRI pulse sequences that are able to rapidly image relatively large volumes of tissue with high resolution whilst retaining many of the advantages of fast spin-echo sequences.  They are able to create the same weightings as traditional 2D sequen...
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Abdomen (AP supine view)

AP supine radiograph can be performed as a standalone projection or as part of an acute abdominal series, depending on the clinical question posed, local protocol and the availability of other imaging modalities. Patient position the patient is supine, lying on his or her back, either on the x...
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Abdomen (dorsal decubitus view)

The dorsal decubitus view is a supplementary projection often replacing the lateral decubitus view in the context of an unstable patient who is unable to roll nor stand. Used to identify free intraperitoneal gas (pneumoperitoneum). It can be performed when the patient is unable to be transferred...
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Abdomen (lateral decubitus view)

The lateral decubitus abdominal radiograph is used to identify free intraperitoneal gas (pneumoperitoneum). It can be performed when the patient is unable to be transferred to, or other imaging modalities (e.g. CT) are not available. The most useful position for detecting free intraperitoneal ai...
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Abdomen (oblique view)

AP oblique supine radiograph is normally performed when localizing foreign bodies or lines within the abdominal cavity. Additionally, the oblique abdominal series can be utilized in the assessment of the upper intestinal tract during barium studies. Patient position the patient is laying 30 de...
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Abdomen (PA erect view)

The PA erect abdominal radiograph is often obtained in conjunction with the AP supine abdominal view in the acute abdominal series of radiographs. When used together it is a valuable projection in assessing air fluid levels, and free air in the abdominal cavity. The erect abdominal radiograph h...
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Abdomen (PA prone view)

The PA prone radiograph is rarely performed and is often utilized when a patient is unable to lay supine. The projection is adequate for the examination of the abdominal cavity, however, not as practical for the renal structures due to magnification. Indications This view is useful in visualiz...
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Abdomen radiograph (pediatric)

The abdomen radiograph is a commonly requested examination in the pediatric patient. Children that present for abdominal x-rays are often very unwell, therefore specialized techniques and appropriate communication are essential for gaining the child's cooperation.  Indications Performing abdom...
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Abdominal imaging (dual energy CT)

The role of dual energy CT is becoming increasingly more prevalent abdominal imaging due to the availability of scanners and increasing field of research. Acute bowel ischemia The addition of iodine maps and 40-keV monoenergetic images to standard single energy CT images was found to increase ...
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Abdominal radiography

Abdominal radiography can be useful in many settings. Before the advent of computed tomography (CT) imaging, it was a primary means of investigating gastrointestinal pathology and often allowed indirect evaluation of other abdominal viscera. Indications Although abdominal radiography has lower...
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ABER position

The ABER position relates to MR arthrography of the shoulder joint and is a mnemonic for ABduction and External Rotation. In this position, labral tears are made conspicuous by tightening the inferior glenohumeral labroligamentous complex (which are also the most important glenohumeral ligament...
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Acromioclavicular joint (AP view)

The acromioclavicular AP view is a single projection assessing the patency of the acromioclavicular joint. See also, acromioclavicular joint injuries. Patient position patient is erect midcoronal plane of the patient is parallel to the image receptor, in other words, the patient's back is ag...
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Acromioclavicular joint (AP weight-bearing view)

The acromioclavicular AP weight-bearing view is an additional interjection often performed to rule out displacement when it is suspected but not confirmed on the AP view See also, acromioclavicular joint injuries. Patient position the patient is erect holding a weight in the affected sides ha...
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Acromioclavicular joint series

The acromioclavicular (AC) joint radiographic series is used to evaluate the acromioclavicular joint and the distal clavicle. Indications AC radiographs are performed for a variety of indications including:  shoulder trauma direct blows to the shoulder region following a fall onto an adduct...
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Acute abdominal series

The acute abdominal series is a common set of abdominal radiographs obtained to evaluate bowel gas.  Indications The acute series is used for a variety of indications including:  determine the amount of bowel gas, with possible bowel distention assess air-fluid levels query pneumoperitoneum...
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ADIR position

The ADIR (ADduction and Internal Rotation) position relates to MR arthrography of the shoulder joint. When added to a neutral-position shoulder protocol, MR arthrography in the ADIR position facilitates the diagnosis of labroligamentous lesions in patients with recurrent shoulder dislocations, ...
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Air gap technique

The air gap technique is a radiographic technique that improves image contrast resolution through reducing the amount of scattered radiation that reaches the image detector. In select situations, this technique can be used instead of an antiscatter grid as the primary scatter reduction method in...
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Air gap technique (general radiography)

The utilization of the air gap technique in general radiography is limited due to the need for equipment facilitation to create the air gap when it is not inherent in the standard technique. Horizontal-beam lateral hip There are many different methods of performing the horizontal beam lateral ...
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Air gap technique (mammography)

The air gap technique is utilized for the magnification mammography view. Magnification mammography is a high dose imaging technique which is generally utilized as a follow-up to a standard mammogram image series when a focal area needs to be more clearly examined 1. The air gap technique is ut...
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Aliasing artifact (CT)

Aliasing artifact, otherwise known as undersampling, in CT refers to an error in the accuracy proponent of analog to digital converter (ADC) during image digitization.  Image digitization has three distinct steps: scanning, sampling, and quantization.  When sampling, the brightness of each pix...
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Anatomic position

The anatomic position, also referred to as the standard anatomic position, is the consistent position of the human body in which positional reference is made for anatomical nomenclature. It is not reliant on whether the patient is standing, supine, prone, sitting, etc. The position is defined a...
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Ankle and foot radiography

Ankle and foot radiography is the plain radiographic investigation of the distal tibia and fibula, the tarsal bones and metatarsals. Radiographic examination of the foot and ankle are often requested together, however, there is a plethora of literature to aid in the correct request of x-ray exam...
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Ankle (AP view)

Ankle AP view is part of a three view series of the distal tibia, distal fibula, proximal talus and proximal metatarsals. Patient position the patient may be supine or sitting upright with their leg straighten on the table the foot is in dorsiflexion the toes will be pointing directly toward...
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Ankle (horizontal beam lateral view)

The ankle horizontal beam lateral view is a modified lateral view part of a three view ankle series; this projection is used to assess the distal tibia and fibula, talus, navicular, cuboid, the base of the 5th metatarsal and calcaneus. The horizontal beam lateral is a highly adaptable projectio...
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Ankle (lateral view)

Ankle lateral view is part of a three view ankle series; this projection is used to assess the distal tibia and fibula, talus, navicular, cuboid, the base of the 5th metatarsal and calcaneus. Patient position patient is in a lateral recumbent position on the table the lateral aspect of the kn...
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Ankle (mortise view)

Ankle AP mortise (mortice is equally correct) view is part of a three view series of the distal tibia, distal fibula, talus and proximal metatarsals. It is the most pertinent projection for assessing the articulation of the tibial plafond and two malleoli with the talar dome, otherwise known as ...
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Ankle radiograph (an approach)

Ankle radiographs are frequently performed in emergency departments, usually, after trauma, the radiographic series is comprised of three views: an anteroposterior, mortise, and a lateral. They may be performed to assess degenerative or inflammatory arthritis as well as to look for the sequela o...
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Ankle series

The ankle series is comprised of an anteroposterior (AP), mortise and lateral radiograph. The series is often used in emergency departments to evaluate the distal tibia, distal fibula, and the talus; forming the ankle joint. See approach to an ankle series. Indications Ankle radiographs are p...
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Ankle (stress view)

The AP stress view of the ankle is a highly specialized view used to assess the integrity of the syndesmosis and deltoid ligament. It can be performed one of two ways, with gravity or via manual external rotation.  Indications In intermediate ankle injuries that have no syndesmotic widening on...
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Ankylosing spondylitis

Ankylosing spondylitis (less commonly known as Bechterew disease and Marie Strümpell disease) is a seronegative spondyloarthropathy, which results in fusion (ankylosis) of the spine and sacroiliac (SI) joints, although involvement is also seen in large and small joints. Epidemiology Traditiona...
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Axial plane for imaging of the brain

A consistent axial plane for imaging of the brain needs to be chosen to allow for reproducible image acquisition and comparison. Unlike the sagittal plane, which is intrinsically defined by our inherent left-right plane of symmetry, axial and coronal planes need to be agreed upon and over the ye...
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Axillary view

An axillary view (also known as a "Cleopatra view“) is a type of supplementary mammographic view. It is an exaggerated craniocaudal view for better imaging of the lateral portion of the breast to the axillary tail. This projection is performed whenever we want to show a lesion seen only in the a...
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Barolith

A barolith consists of inspissated barium associated with feces seen rarely, after barium studies for imaging the gastrointestinal tract. Since barium sulfate is insoluble, it can in rare cases precipitate in the bowel, sometimes becoming symptomatic with a significant delay (from few weeks to u...
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Baumann angle

Baumann angle, also known as the humeral-capitellar angle, is used for the evaluation of the displacement of  pediatric supracondylar humeral fractures. It is measured on a frontal radiograph, with elbow in extension. This angle is formed  by the humeral axis and a straight line through the epi...
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Beam hardening

Beam hardening is the phenomenon that occurs when an x-ray beam comprised of polychromatic energies passes through an object, resulting in selective attenuation of lower energy photons. The effect is conceptually similar to a high-pass filter, in that only higher energy photons are left to contr...
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Bone age (radiograph)

The bone age, hand and wrist PA is a commonly performed examination to determine the radiographic age of the patient via the assessment of growth centers Patient position patient is seated alongside the table the non-dominant hand is placed, palm down on the image receptor shoulder, elbow, a...
Article

Bouchard node

Bouchard nodes are a clinical sign relating to bony nodules of the proximal interphalangeal joints and are much less common than Heberden nodes. They generally (but not always) correspond to palpable osteophytes. Clinical presentation They are sometimes painful, and are typically associated wi...
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Brain tumor protocol (MRI)

MRI protocol for brain tumor assessment is a group of MRI sequences put together to best approach CNS tumors in general. Note: This article is intended to outline some general principles of protocol design. The specifics will vary depending on MRI hardware and software, radiologist's and referr...
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Bullseye view

The bullseye view is designed for better evaluation of lesion located in retroareolar area. In this view, the nipple-areola complex are directed upward or downward on the detector surface to visualize the areolar and periareolar region en face,  allowing characterization of lesions in this area.
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Calcaneus (axial view)

Calcaneus axial view is part of the two view calcaneus series, this projection is best used to asses the talocalcaneal joint and plantar aspects of the calcaneus. The axial view has a diagnostic sensitivity of 87% for calcaneus fractures 1.  Patient position patient is supine or seated with th...
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Calcaneus (lateral view)

Calcaneus lateral view is part of the two view calcaneus series; this projection is used to assess the calcaneus, talocrural, talonavicular and talocalcaneal joint. Patient position the patient is in a lateral recumbent position on the table the lateral aspect of the knee and ankle joint shou...
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Calcaneus series

The calcaneus series is comprised of a lateral and axial (plantodorsal) projection. The calcaneus is the most commonly fractured tarsal bone accounting for ~60% of all tarsal fractures 1. This series provides a two view investigation of the calcaneus alongside the talar articulations and talocal...
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Calvarial doughnut lesion

Calvarial doughnut lesions are radiolucent ring-like skull defects, with surrounding sclerotic halo, which may have central bone density, and may occur in any part of the skull. Epidemiology Most of these lesions occur in middle life and old age, but it also may happen in juvenile skulls 1,2. ...
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Cardiac blood pool scan

A multi-gated (MUGA) cardiac blood pool scan (sometimes just called a MUGA scan) is a common study performed in patients who are receiving potentially cardiotoxic chemotherapy.  Indications acute myocardial infarction (AMI) coronary artery disease (CAD) evaluation after coronary artery bypas...
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Cardiac imaging planes

Cardiac imaging planes are standard orientations for displaying the heart on MRI, CT, SPECT, and PET, similar to those used in echocardiography. The planes are defined in reference to the long axis of the left ventricle, which is the line that connects the ventricular apex to the center of the m...
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Cassette

Cassettes are rigid holders used in conventional and computed radiography (CR) for the screen film system and imaging plate respectively.  The back side of the cassette has a rubber or felt for adequate contact between screen film system or with the imaging plate. The front is made of low atomi...
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Caudal cranial projection

Caudal cranial projection is an additional trouble shooting view. Technique invert the C arm as for a CC projection step the patient forward and have her bend excessively forward at the waist to ensure that the abdomen does not encroach in the x ray field place the image receptor above the b...
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Cerebral angiography

Cerebral angiography is an interventional procedure for the diagnosis and/or treatment of intracranial pathology. Indications Cerebral digital subtraction angiography (DSA) is indicated in a variety of settings including: diagnosis and treatment of: aneurysms acute ischemic stroke vascular...
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Cervical spine alignment

When assessing cervical spine alignment, look for four parallel lines connecting structures in the cervical spine: anterior vertebral line: anterior margin of the vertebral bodies posterior vertebral line: posterior margin of the vertebral bodies spinolaminar line: posterior margin of the spi...
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Cervical spine (AP oblique view)

The AP oblique cervical spine projections are supplementary views to the standard AP, odontoid and lateral c-spine series. It can be taken either as an anterior oblique or posterior oblique projection. Patient position patient is standing erect with either the left or right posterior side clos...
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Cervical spine (AP view)

The AP cervical spine projection is part of the cervical spine series. Patient position patient positioned erect in AP position (unless trauma when the patient will be supine) patient shoulders should be at equal distances from the image receptor to avoid rotation, the head facing straight fo...
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Cervical spine (flexion-extension views)

Cervical spine flexion-extension lateral views are specialized projections of the cervical spine often requested to assess for spinal stability. Cervical spine flexion-extension lateral views should not be performed on trauma patients without strict instructions of a qualified clinician. Patie...
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Cervical spine (Fuchs view)

The closed mouth odontoid AP view (Fuchs view) is a nonangled AP radiograph of C1 and C2. This view focuses primarily on the odontoid process. The standard Fuchs view should not be used in a trauma setting and the modified Fuchs view may be used instead. Patient position supine or erect head...
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Cervical spine (lateral view)

Cervical spine lateral view is a lateral projection of the cervical spine. It is often performed in the setting of trauma. As technology advances, computed tomography (CT) has replaced this projection, yet there remain many institutions (especially in rural areas) where CT is not readily availa...
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Cervical spine (odontoid view)

The odontoid or 'peg' projection is an AP projection of C1 (atlas) and C2 (axis). Patient position patient positioned erect in AP position unless trauma the patient will be supine patient’s shoulders should be at equal distances from the image receptor to avoid rotation, the head facing strai...
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Cervical spine (PA oblique view)

The PA oblique cervical spine projections are supplementary views to the standard AP, Odontoid and lateral c-spine series. It can be taken either as an anterior oblique or posterior oblique projection. This projection can be used to visualize the intervertebral foramina. Patient position patie...
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Cervical spine series

The cervical spine series is a set of radiographs taken to investigate the bony structures of the cervical spine, albeit commonly replaced by the CT, the cervical spine series is an essential trauma radiograph for all radiographers to understand. Indications Cervical spine radiographs are indi...
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Cervical spine (swimmer's lateral view)

Cervical spine swimmer's lateral view is a modified lateral projection of the cervical spine to visualize the C7/T1 junction.  As technology advances, computed tomography has replaced this projection, yet there remain many institutions (especially in rural areas) where computed tomography is no...
Article

Charge-coupled device detector

Charge-coupled device (CCD) detectors are used in digital radiography for the indirect conversion of x-ray photons into an electric charge (indirect because the x-ray photons are first converted into light via a scintillating screen). Structure A charge-coupled device can either be an area arr...
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Chest (AP erect view)

The erect anteroposterior chest view is performed with the x-ray tube anteriorly, firing photons through the patient to form the image on a detector positioned behind the patient. A detector can be positioned behind a relatively immobile patient.  Indications The erect anteroposterior chest vi...
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Chest (AP lordotic view)

The AP lordotic chest radiograph (or AP axial chest radiograph) demonstrates areas of the lung apices that appear obscured on the PA/AP chest radiographic views. Indication It is often used to evaluate suspicious areas within the lung apices that appeared obscured by overlying soft tissue, upp...
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Chest (expiratory view)

An expiratory chest radiograph can be taken in either a PA or AP projection, and can also be taken with a mobile/portable unit.  Chest radiographs may inadvertently be acquired in expiration (instead of inspiration), and this will affect interpretation with the cardiac silhouette appearing enla...
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Chest (lateral decubitus view)

The lateral decubitus view of the chest is a specialized projection rarely utilized with the commonality of CT.  It is chiefly used in the pediatric population. Indication Undertaken to demonstrate small pleural effusions, or for the investigation of pneumothorax and air trapping due to inhale...
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Chest (lateral view)

The lateral chest view may be performed as an adjunct to a frontal chest radiograph in cases where there is diagnostic uncertainty. The lateral chest view examines the lungs, bony thoracic cavity, mediastinum, and great vessels. Lateral radiographs can be particularly useful in assessing the ret...
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Chest (PA view)

Posteroanterior (PA) chest view is the most common radiological investigation in the emergency department 1. The PA view examines the lungs, bony thoracic cavity, mediastinum and great vessels. The chest X-ray is frequently used to aid diagnosis of acute and chronic conditions.   Patient positi...
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Chest photofluorography

Chest photofluorography, also known as mass miniature radiography, is a form of diagnostic imaging known as fluorography, applied to the thorax. Historically it was used for mass screening for pulmonary tuberculosis. The imaging technique consists of recording a miniature photograph of the scre...
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Chest radiograph

The chest radiograph (also known as the chest x-ray or CXR) is anecdotally thought to be the most frequently-performed radiological investigation globally although no published data is known to corroborate this. UK government statistical data from the NHS in England and Wales shows that the ches...
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Chest radiograph (pediatric)

The chest radiograph is one of the most commonly requested radiographic examinations in the assessment of the pediatric patient. Depending on the patients' age, the difficulty of the examination will vary, often requiring a specialist trained radiographer familiar with a variety of distraction a...
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Chest (supine view)

The supine anteroposterior chest view is the alternative to the PA view and the AP erect view when the patient is generally too unwell to tolerate standing, leaving the bed, or sitting 1. The supine view is of lesser quality than both the AP erect and the PA view for many reasons, yet sometimes ...
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Clavicle (AP cephalic view)

The clavicle AP cephalic angulation view is a standard projection part of the clavicle series and is often used in conjunction with the AP clavicle view. Indication This projection straightens out the clavicle and projects most of it above the scapula and second and third rib. It can help to d...
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Clavicle (AP view)

The clavicle AP view is a standard projection part of the clavicle series. The projection demonstrates the shoulder in its natural anatomical position allowing for adequate radiographic examination of the entire clavicle. Indications The AP clavicle is often indicated in patients with suspecte...
Article

Clavicle series

The radiographic series of the clavicle is utilized in emergency departments to assess the clavicle, acromioclavicular and sternoclavicular joint.   Indications Clavicle x-rays are indicated for a variety of settings including: trauma bony tenderness suspected fracture  congenital abnormal...
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Cleavage view

A cleavage view (also called "valley view") is a mammogram view that depict the posteromedial portion of both breasts (the “valley” between the two breasts) by placing them on the cassette at the same time and pulling them anteriorly.  Manual technical factors should be used. A cleavage view m...
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Coccyx (AP view)

The coccyx AP view is used to demonstrate the coccyx, in conjunction with the sacrum and coccyx (lateral view). Follow departmental protocol in relation to imaging this region.  Patient position the radiograph is performed with the patient in a supine position, with arms placed comfortably by ...
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Colonic transit study

The colonic transit study is an older technique to estimate colonic transit time.  Indications In constipation, it can help distinguish between slow colonic transit and a defecation disorder. Procedure The patient ingests a number of radiopaque markers (plastic rings containing radiopaque ma...
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Computed bone maturity (bone age) measurement

Computed bone age measurement refers to the automatic computer analysis of a left hand radiograph in order to estimate accurately bone age in cases of suspected growth delay.  Function Advanced digital processing of data from automatic computer analysis of the phalangeal/carpal bones and/or ep...
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Computed radiography

Computed radiography (CR) is the use of photostimulable phosphor as an image receptor. The image receptor is held in a similar casing (cassette) to that of the traditional film screen. Computed radiography harnesses the absorption of radiation, trapping electrons at energy levels via the process...
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Computed tomography curriculum

The radiography computed tomography section covers in detail the various clinical presentations that require specific computed tomography (CT) investigations, the anatomy examined and the different protocols utilized for specific pathology. It is broken down into region specific sections and is ...
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Contrast enhanced mammography

Contrast enhanced mammography (CEM) is a complementary breast imaging modality. A finite number of sequential images are obtained with X-ray beam produced at a high energy, above the K-edge of Iodine (33 KeV) 5, and with an intravenous non-ionic Iodine contrast agent injected between pre and pos...
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Contrast media extravasation

Contrast media extravasation (CMEV) refers to the leakage of intravenously-administered contrast media from the normal intravascular compartment into surrounding soft tissues; it is a well-known complication of contrast-enhanced CT scanning. It can also occur in MRI studies, but the complication...
Article

Craniocaudal view

The craniocaudal view (CC view), along with the MLO view, is one of the two standard projections in a screening mammography. It must show the medial part as well the external lateral portion of the breast as much as possible. A correctly performed CC projection may show the pectoral muscle on t...
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CT abdomen (summary)

This is a basic article for medical students and other non-radiologists CT abdomen is an increasingly common investigation that is used to help make diagnoses of a broad range of pathologies. A CT abdomen in its simplest form is a CT from diaphragm to symphysis pubis performed 60 seconds after ...
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CT angiography of the chest (technique)

CT angiography of the chest (CTA chest) is a cross-sectional diagnostic examination that can be performed ECG-gated or non-ECG gated.   NB: This article is intended to outline some general principles of protocol design. The specifics will vary depending on CT hardware and software, radiologists...
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CT chest non contrast (technique)

The non-contrast CT chest is a commonly performed diagnostic examination. It is often performed to evaluate conditions impacting the lungs or preferenced over a contrast enhanced scan when iodinated contrast is contraindicated.  NB: This article is intended to outline some general principles of...
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CT dose

CT dose is measured and reported via a variety of methods, put simply, it can be divided into three primary categories: exposure, absorbed dose, and effective dose.  It is important to note that to accurately determine a patients dose from a CT scan one must know the patient size and the radiat...
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CT head (technique)

CT head technique describes how a CT head is performed. Technique The technique for performing a CT of the head depends on the scanner available and fall into two broad camps:  step-and-shoot volumetric acquisition (most common) Step-and-shoot Step-and-shoot scanning was the first describe...
Article

CT polytrauma (technique)

CT polytrauma/multitrauma, also called trauma CT, whole body CT (WBCT) or panscan, is an increasingly used investigation in patients with multiple injuries sustained after significant trauma. Clinical assessment and mechanism of injury may underestimate injury severity by 30% 8. There is some e...
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CT protocol

A CT protocol is a set of parameters that specify a specific exam and contrast delivery requirements. When a CT scan is requested, it will be vetted by a radiologist or radiographer to determine the study is justified and what the most suitable parameters by which that CT should be performed - t...
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CT pulmonary angiogram (technique)

The computed tomography pulmonary angiogram (CTPA/CTPE) is a commonly performed diagnostic examination to exclude pulmonary emboli. Each radiology department will have a slightly different method for achieving the same outcome, i.e. adequate enhancement of the pulmonary trunk and its branches.  ...
Article

Dacryocystography

Dacryocystography (DCG) is a fluoroscopic contrast examination of the nasolacrimal apparatus. The nasolacrimal duct is cannulated enabling iodinated contrast to be instilled into the nasolacrimal system. Indications The most frequent indication is epiphora: excessive tearing or watering of the...
Article

Deep endometriosis (transvaginal ultrasound)

Transvaginal ultrasound (TV) for deep endometriosis is a specialized ultrasound technique used for the detection of deep endometriosis (DE). It differs from a traditional pelvic ultrasound in that the scan is extended beyond the uterus and ovaries to assess the anterior and posterior pelvic comp...
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Densitometric vertebral fracture assessment

Densitometric vertebral fracture assessment (VFA) is an image of the lumbar and thoracic spine acquired on dual energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA) scanners, for the purpose of diagnosing osteoporotic vertebral fractures.  Terminology The technique is available on DXA scanners under a variety of...