Wentworth-Douglass Hospital
(603) 742-5252
Decrease (-) Restore Default Increase (+) font size
Physicians
Health Library
Back to Health Library   Print This Page Print    Email to a Friend Email

Skeletal spine
Skeletal spine


Vertebra, thoracic (mid back)
Vertebra, thoracic (mid back)


Vertebral column
Vertebral column


Intervertebral disk
Intervertebral disk


Anterior skeletal anatomy
Anterior skeletal anatomy


Definition:

A thoracic spine x-ray is an x-ray of the twelve chest (thoracic) vertebrae. The vertebrae are separated by flat pads of cartilage that cushion them.



Alternative Names:

Vertebral radiography; X-ray - spine; Thoracic x-ray; Spine x-ray; Thoracic spine films; Back films



How the test is performed:

The test is performed in a hospital radiology department or in the health care provider’s office by an x-ray technician. You will lie on the x-ray table and assume various positions. If the x-ray is to determine an injury, care will be taken to prevent further injury.

The x-ray machine will be positioned over the thoracic area of the spine. You will hold your breath as the picture is taken, so that the picture will not be blurry. Usually 2 or 3 views are needed.



How to prepare for the test:

Inform the health care provider if you are pregnant. Remove all jewelry.



How the test will feel:

Th test causes no discomfort. The table may be cold.



Why the test is performed:

The x-ray helps evaluate bone injuries, disease of the bone, tumors of the bone, or cartilage loss.



Normal Values:



What abnormal results mean:

The abnormalities the test will pick up include fractures , dislocations, thinning of the bone (osteoporosis ), and deformities in the curvature of the spine. The test may also detect bone spurs, disk narrowing, and degeneration of the vertebrae.



What the risks are:

There is low radiation exposure. X-rays are monitored and regulated to provide the minimum amount of radiation exposure needed to produce the image. Most experts feel that the risk is low compared with the benefits. Pregnant women and children are more sensitive to the risks of the x-ray.



Special considerations:

The x-ray will not detect problems in the muscles, nerves, and other soft tissues, because they can't be seen well on an x-ray.




Review Date: 7/18/2007
Reviewed By: Stuart Bentley-Hibbert, M.D., Ph.D., Department of Radiology, Weill Cornell Medical Center, New York, NY. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network.

The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
adam.com


Find What You Need

Events
Careers
Foundation
About Us
Contact
Directions
News
Social Media Agreement
Joint Notice
Web Privacy Policy
WDH Staff Portal

Centers & Services

Cancer Center
Cardiovascular Care
Joint Replacement
Women & Children's
Physician Offices
Other Services

Conditions & Treatments

Health Library

Support Services

Support Groups
Care-Van
Dental Center
Social Work
Food & Nutrition
Integrative Wellness
Spiritual Care
Concerns & Grievances
Homecare and Hospice

For Patients

Pay Your Bill Online
Pricing Estimates
Financial Assistance
Interpreter Services
Surgery Preparation
Medical Record Request
Advance Directives
Clinical Research & Trials

For Healthcare Professionals

Work and Life
Financial Well-Being
Career and Growth

The Wentworth-Douglass Health System includes:

 

Address

Wentworth-Douglass Hospital
789 Central Avenue, Dover, NH 03820
Phone: (603) 742-5252
Toll free: 1 (877) 201-7100