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To help make your visit as straightforward as possible we have created the following general radiography (X-Ray) frequently asked questions section:

If you have any additional questions, or have any concerns, you can contact the doctor who referred you for the test/procedure, or you can ask the Radiographer when you arrive for the examination.

What is an X-Ray?

An X-Ray is a safe and painless procedure that is used to produce images of the inside of the body.
It is a type of radiation that is similar to visible light but with some important differences. The key difference is that X-Rays can pass through the body and create image of the structures it has passed through or interacted with. This image is captured digitally and saved on our storage system (PACS) system where it can be viewed at a later date.

Is X-Ray safe?

Exposure to high levels of radiation can be very harmful. However, the X-Rays used for medical purposes are safe because the dose of radiation is very small. The dose of radiation that you will receive is roughly the same as you would receive from the general environment over about a week, or from taking a long-distance, international plane flight.

What happens if I think I could be pregnant?

If there is any chance you may be pregnant, tell the radiographer or assistant practitioner who is doing the X-Ray.
While the majority of medical X-Rays do not pose a serious risk to a developing baby, they are not usually recommended for pregnant women, except in an emergency.

Why do I need an X-Ray?

You will have recently seen your doctor about a medical problem. Your doctor may make the decision that an X-Ray examination would be beneficial in aiding your diagnosis. The doctor that refers you for the X-Ray should follow national guidelines which recommend specific X-Ray examinations for specific problems to avoid unnecessary exposures to radiation.

What do I have to do before my X-Ray?

There is no preparation for these types of X-rays, however we ask that you try to avoid any metallic objects around the area to be X-rayed. Please remove and keep any jewellery safe as we cannot look after your jewellery for you.

What if I have a physical impairment or a disability?

Our staff are trained to work sensitively with those who may need extra support. We can provide a hoist, interpreters, a hearing loop system or other support as required.

What will happen when I arrive?

When you arrive at the X-Ray department you will book in at the reception desk and take a seat. When it is time for your examination you will be taken into the X-Ray room or may be asked to get changed. If you are asked to get changed into one of our patient gowns, it is usually because the area being imaged may be obscured by your normal clothing, which may lead to the image needing to being repeated.

What happens during the x-ray?

When you enter the X-ray room you will be greeted by a radiographer or assistant practitioner who will be performing the X-Ray. They will ask you to confirm your name and date of birth and the area that you are expecting to be X-Rayed. If you are female and of child-bearing age you may be asked if there is any possibility of pregnancy. All this is for your own safety.

You will be asked to either: stand, sit on a chair or lie down on the x-ray couch for your X-Ray, depending on the area of your body being imaged. The radiographer or assistant practitioner will make you comfortable and position you according to the part of your body being imaged.

How long will my X-Ray take?

Every X-Ray examination time is different and specific to the patient and body area being imaged.
On average the time spent in the X-Ray room ranges from 5-15 minutes.

Can I bring someone with me?

You can bring a friend or relative with you if you want to but they should not accompany you into the x-ray room.
The Radiographer has the final say as to who is permitted into the examination room. We will only allow one other person unless there is a particular reason why more should be needed. We are unable to look after children during your examination.

What happens after my X-Ray?

After the examination is finished you will be shown back to the reception or changing cubicle where you can get dressed and collect your belongings. You are then free to leave. You will not get any results on the day of your examination as the images need to be interpreted by a radiologist or specially trained radiographer. Once the results are ready, they will be sent back to the doctor who requested the X-Ray. For GP patients this will be within 2 weeks.

What do I do if I want to send a compliment or complaint?

Please ask for the superintendent radiographer at the time of your examination, or contact us via
How do I find the department? Please refer to the service description area of this webpage or You can find further details on our “How to find us” page on the Trust website.

Car parking spaces are limited so if you are travelling by car please allow yourself plenty of time to park.

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