X-rays are a procedure that involve using radiation to produce images of the inside the body. At The Shard we use X-rays to help our consultants diagnose and detect different conditions.
Understanding X-rays and how they can help you
An X-ray can help detect many problems, particularly with bones and joints. They can also be used to diagnose other conditions, such as those concerning soft tissue and body organs.
At The Shard we conduct X-rays to help identify conditions, including:
- Any skeletal images if bone tumours are suspected
- Dental conditions like impacted wisdom teeth and abscesses (OPG)
- Fluoroscopy imaging for the urinary tract, small and large bowel, oesophagus, female reproductive system, block salivary glands (sialogram), rectal and anal canal (proctogram).
- Lung x-rays (pneumonia, prolonged coughing, some cancers, COPD, bronchitis,TB and heart failure)
- Osteoporosis or bone fractures
- Pre and post-operative imaging for hip or knee replacements
- Scoliosis (curved spine)
The X-ray procedure
X-rays are a type of radiation that pass through the body. An X-ray can’t be felt or seen by the naked eye.
Lasting for just a few minutes, the whole procedure is quick and painless, with the X-ray itself taking just a fraction of a second. Appointments are not needed for most plain x-rays. Fluoroscopy imaging needs to be booked as it involves a specialist Radiologist.
Depending on what part of your body is having the X-ray, the procedure involves you lying down on a table or standing against a flat surface. The X-ray machine looks like a tube containing a large light bulb. The radiographer will aim the machine at the part of your body that needs to be examined.
To stop the X-ray images that the machine produces from blurring, you will need to keep very still during the procedure. You may also be required in some instances to hold your breath.
You won’t need to do any preparation before the X-ray, and you can still eat and drink as normal. You may, however, need to stop taking some medication. We will speak to you about this. Unless it’s an emergency, it’s also not recommended for pregnant women to have an X-ray.
You should wear loose fitted clothing for the X-ray, but it’s advisable not to wear anything metal, including clothing with studs or jewellery, as you will need to remove it first.
Why you should choose X-ray services at The Shard
High-end X-ray technology – The Shard’s X-ray services are built with the latest technology in the field, which can identify conditions rapidly and accurately. This helps us to quickly and conveniently provide you with the right treatment you need.
Effective treatment for the best outcome – We always aim to give same or next day appointments at The Shard to anyone who wishes to use our X-ray services. Our exceptional team always does its best to make sure the process is quick and effective, so we can focus on giving you the best outcome, whether that’s bringing you peace of mind or providing an efficient treatment programme for you.
Exceptional radiographers and patient care – At The Shard, your X–ray will be performed by our world-leading HPC-registered (Health & Care Professions Council) radiographers, who will quickly diagnose any problems or conditions to determine the right course of action for you. When using the outpatient services, our highly qualified team will make sure you receive exceptional quality of care, from before the procedure to any key treatment afterwards to get you back to living a happy life.