Your X-ray

Please note, this page is printable by selecting the normal print options on your computer.

What is an X-ray?

This is a picture of the internal structures of the relevant part of the body, produced by exposure to a controlled source of X-rays. The resulting picture will be seen on a computer screen and recorded digitally.

Am I required to make any special preparations?
No, but if you are a woman who is, or might be, pregnant, you should tell the Radiographer. For certain examinations all women between the ages of 12-50 years will be asked to provide the date of their last menstrual period and the examination will only be carried out within a certain time span. Also, please tell the Radiology Department if you have recently had a similar X-ray.

Parking at the Hospital
The hospital operates a pay on foot parking system. The current charges are £2.50 for the first hour, £3.50 up to three hours and £4.60 up to 6 hours. The hospital has plenty of car parking spaces but you may not be able to park close to the entrance. You are advised to allow plenty of time to find a space before your appointment.

Where do I book in?
Your letter will tell you if you are going to be x-rayed in Main X-Ray or in the Out-patients Xray. You will find directions to the correct area in your appointment letter. Please bring your letter with you.

What happens then?
You may be asked to remove any clothes or jewellery, including slides and hair ornaments, which may interfere with the X-ray. You will be asked to put on a surgical gown. You may also bring your own dressing gown if you wish.

What happens during the X-ray?
You will be taken into the X-ray room where the procedure will be explained. Although the Radiographer will go behind a screen, you will be seen and heard at all times should you have a problem.

Will it be uncomfortable?
No. You will not feel any pain and apart from having to remain still for a short while, you experience no discomfort.

How long will it take?
The process of taking the film usually lasts only a few minutes, but different procedures require varying techniques. This usually takes no more than 5 – 10 minutes, and unless you have had to wait, such as for emergency patients, your total time in the Department should not be more than 30 minutes.

Are there any risks?
There are risks involved with X-rays as radiation is used. However a simple x-ray, a chest for example, uses the amount of radiation equivalent to that which we all receive from the atmosphere over a period of 2 or 3 days. More complex examinations such as a Pelvis or a Spine may be the equivalent of up to 5 months. You should not worry about this radiation from the X-ray, and, as your Doctor feels he needs to investigate a potential problem, the risk from not having the examination could be greater. Ask the Radiographer if you have any concerns.

Are there any side effects?
None at all. You may drive and return home or to work immediately afterwards.

When will I get the results?
The film will be examined shortly after your visit, and a report on the findings written. This may take some time to reach your referring doctor, but is normally available within 14 days. If it is
decided more urgent treatment is required your Doctor will be informed.

If you have a query about having the X-ray, please ring the Radiology Department on 01908 996932 between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday.

Web Links
For further information you may like to visit the following site – For further information about Milton Keynes University Hospital. – This is the website of the Royal College of Radiologists and click into the virtual hospital this will give you a lot of useful information about the work of a Radiology Department.