X-Ray

x-ray
X-rays are a type of electromagnetic radiation, just like visible light. An x-ray machine sends individual x-ray particles through the body. The images are recorded on a computer or film.
  • Structures that are dense (such as bone) will block most of the x-ray particles, and will appear white.
  • Metal and contrast media (special dye used to highlight areas of the body) will also appear white.
  • Structures containing air will be black, and muscle, fat, and fluid will appear as shades of gray.
X-rays are monitored and regulated so you get the minimum amount of radiation exposure needed to produce the image. For most conventional x-rays, the risk of cancer or defects is very low. Most experts feel that benefits of appropriate x-imaging greatly outweight any risks.