Harmful if chest x-ray and how often it can be done

At all times went the debate about the safety of x-ray examination. After all, during the procedure, the body is exposed to radiation, which by definition can't be good for him. But a certificate on completion of the surveys required almost everywhere, get you to work or lead the child to the pediatrician. So let's see, harmful fluoroscopy, and, if not, how often to do the procedure.

General definition, types treatments

Fluorography is a method of inspection of organs of thorax. It is based on the ability of tissues to absorb unevenly as it passes through the x-ray radiation. The results of the survey are displayed on the screen and then are reviewed by a specialist.

Chest x – ray- preventive procedure. With its help it is impossible to make an accurate diagnosis or to see the full clinical picture. But the survey allows to detect pathological changes in the respiratory system, on the basis of what can be carried out a more thorough investigation of the specialist.

Today we use two method of research of a thorax. And, interestingly, this factor defines the potential damage that can be inflicted on the body from radiation.

Film fluorography

During the procedure, x-rays pass through the patient's body from the back and come on a special photosensitive film on which is projected the image of bone tissue and organs. The main disadvantages of this method is the need to use special equipment for the manifestation of images and higher radiation dose in comparison with new technologies.

The radiation dose during fluoroscopy film is more than 50% of the allowable annual rate.

Given the weaknesses of this research method, modern clinic abandon its use in favor of the new digital equipment.

Digital fluoroscopy

The method is based on the passage of the directional linear beam only through the surveyed area. The resulting image of the organs is displayed on the monitor screen, and then can be immediately examined by a specialist.

Using digital fluoroscopy allows you to instantly receive and process x-ray images. But the main advantage of this method is the low level of radiation exposure and as a result, the minimum harm to the body.

In medicine there is such concept, as the effective equivalent dose. It is a measure that indicates the possible risk of complications after irradiation. So is the case with film chest x-rays, this dose is approximately 0.5 and 0.8 mSv, while in the survey on digital equipment, this figure does not exceed 0,04 mSv. The difference is more than significant. Anyone not difficult to self-assess how harmful and dangerous to do fluoroscopy outdated traditional method.

Many patients confuse x-rays and x-rays. X-ray is a diagnostic procedure that allows to obtain better and more detailed picture of the condition of the respiratory system. But for this "quality" will need to apply a large dose of radiation. So to do a chest x-ray for prevention is impossible.

The indications for the procedure

According to who, the tests should all people over the age of 15 years. In the absence of special indications to do x-rays recommended once a year. Also the obligatory annual examination of the chest is for such categories of population:

  • patients with a history of severe chronic diseases of respiratory organs (bronchial asthma, chronic bronchitis with obstruction, emphysema, chronic pneumonia, etc.);
  • patients undergoing radiation or steroid therapy;
  • people who do not have permanent residence;
  • social workers in contact with children and adolescents.
  • employees of hospitals, health centers, schools and sports institutions, having constant contact with a broad audience of the population.

There is another category of patients for whom screening is recommended every six months. Indication for more frequent visits to the office fluoroscopy is:

  • HIV infection, including those diagnosed for the first time;
  • the carriage of the Bacillus or close contact with tuberculosis patients;
  • the work in the tuberculosis clinic, hospital or kindergarten;
  • the presence of a serious chronic disease, for example, asthma or diabetes.

Additional chest x-rays recommended in the draft to military service or when the family of the newborn.


Fluoroscopy not carried out in the presence of contraindications:

  • Children up to age 15 years. Even minimal radiation doses provoke a decrease in immunity, making the young organism susceptible to infections. In addition, immature bodies are not able to withstand any amount of radiation, which in the future could threaten the growth of cancer cells.
  • The period of pregnancy. The exception is an emergency situation in which the examination is carried out for health reasons. In such cases, fluoroscopy is possible in the period of more than 20weeks when the fetus is formed the internal organs. It is obligatory observance of all precautions, in particular, the use of a protective apron to prevent exposure of the stomach area.
  • The lactation period. Not a strict contraindication, but if necessary, the survey breast milk it is recommended to decant. Later feeding the baby is a new developed portion.
  • General serious condition of the patient in which he cannot remain in an upright position.
  • Claustrophobia and other diseases, accompanied by severe lack of oxygen.

As you can see, absolute contraindications to fluoroscopy does not exist. A listed state – a temporary obstacle to the implementation of the survey.

So is there any harm

According to statistics, the average radiation dose received by the inhabitants of the planet from natural sources, is 2.3 to 3.5 mSv. And it is many times more than from the equivalent dose received during a routine digital x-rays. Thus, the very fluorography as a method of diagnosis annual, unable to cause substantial harm to the body. But given the General background radiation and the need to use other methods of radiological research, a certain amount of risk is still present. However, these risks are substantially below those that are associated with the hidden course of the disease, diagnosed using the dosage.

The final decision whether to do chest x-rays, the patient. Because the law of man can refuse the forced irradiation of radiation rays, even in the presence of certain indications. But first is to weigh the pros and cons of this method of examination and to listen to the terrible statistics on the incidence of tuberculosis.