Thank you for joining me once again this evening for these nightly podcasts. I am Dr. Harrison Campbell owner of Restoration Health a premier sugar land chiropractors office. In tonightís podcast we will be discussing the benefits of X-ray imaging.
X-ray imaging is a radiographic image of the skeletal tissue or bones and associated soft tissue surrounded the bones images. The way X-ray imaging work is based off of using high energy particle to pass trough the body and leave an imprint on the film behind the body.
As all sugar land chiropractors will tell you the more dense the tissue is the more it show ups. What they mean by the lore it shows up is the brightness of the structure on the X-ray. Bones are extremely dense and are therefore white on the X-ray image. Soft tissue is not as dense and therefore shows up as shades of gray on the X-ray image. Air has almost no density and therefore shows up as black on the X-ray.
Based on this information sugar land chiropractors will primarily use X-ray imaging to view the bones or the joints. You can utilize them for some soft tissue and we will get to this topic in a minute.
The most obvious reason to take an X-ray is to determine if there is a break or fracture in a bone or a dislocations or signs of a dislocation in the joint. For a dislocation we are looking for signs of the dislocated bone impacting surrounding bones or using at least two perpendicular angles to see if the joint or bone is still dislocated. On some occasions there can even be chips of bone or other signs that the dislocation has occurred should the dislocation have been reduced prior to the imaging being performed.
There do exist some instances of fractures being small or what are known as hairline fractures and these will usually escape being imaged the first time. The reason for this is due to the area of incident being small and the X-ray particles not penetrating into the fracture to render it visible on the image itself. Usually these hairline a fracture are only noted on subsequent X-rays when the callus is forming. A callus as sugar land chiropractors will tell you is formed when the fracture is healing, it is new bone growth and will be thicker than the normal bone.
The X-ray can also be used to determine how well a fracture is healing based on the level of the callus formed. This is often when you go to have a cast removed and sometimes receive the unfortunate news that it must remain on for x number of weeks. The doctor took the X-ray and determined the callus was not to the point where the cast could be removed with no adverse affects to the healing bone.
Now we briefly mentioned soft tissue being read on an X-ray image. As stated before the soft tissue shows up on shades of gray. There is very little definition to be seen. However, what sugar land chiropractors can determine is if the soft tissue is located where it should be, is there swelling in the soft tissue, and in cases of back pain are the discs of a healthy height or is there decreased height in the discs.
Let us start with the soft tissue being located where it should be. If we have an X-ray of the cervical spine or neck and there is deviation of the trachea or wind pipe, we know there is something either pushing the trachea out of place or something pulling the trachea out of place. Our concern as sugar land chiropractors is there is a tumor in the lung pushing the trachea away and this diagnosis must be ruled out. This is but one example and there are many more, but this gives you a sense of why it is important for soft tissue to be where is anatomically normal.
Soft tissue swelling on the other hand is also important. Swelling or inflammation is excess water is the soft tissue. This excess water increases the density of the soft tissue slightly and causes distortions of the normal fasciae lines we see between layers of soft tissue. It can even cause things not normally visible to. Become visible. As sugar land chiropractors well versed in X-ray reads can tell you a sail sign in the elbow is a sign of a fracture in the elbow. What happens in this instance is the fracture causes inflammation, this excess fluid pushes a fat pad normally hidden in the elbow away from the bone creating what looks like a sail in the elbow on the X-ray image.
As for the final topic of disc height this is using the idea of what is normal and holding the soft tissue to that standard. Between each vertebrae of the spine is a disc. In the cervical spine or neck each of these discs should be relatively the same height or thickness. For the low back you want these discs to be increasing in thickness.
Now on an X-ray the disc is a light gray space between these bright white bones. If we see a place between the bones which is thinner than what is anatomically expected, we can infer a decreased disc height. Now after an injury to the area a thin disc height is associated with a disc herniation which is a problem that needs to be addressed to avoid future problems.
Thank you for joining me this evening for our podcast. I do hope this was educational for you and you can implement this knowledge in your daily life. As always should you require the services of sugar land chiropractors please give Restoration Health a call today. We would love to hear from you and get your treatment plan scheduled. I do hope you will join us for our next podcast on MRI imaging. Thank you once again and have a great evening.