Radiography and fluoroscopy: what is the difference?


  • Fluoroscopy
    1. Advantages
    2. Disadvantages

    Once installation, open physicist Roentgen, was a breakthrough in diagnostic and later therapeutic medicine. Many years have passed, a new visual methods of hardware diagnostics. Proved its benefits of computer tomography, MRI. But glass remains today are informative, most are simple, cheap method of diagnosis. It is used in the diagnosis of pathologies of various diseases: pathologies of the lungs, heart, blood vessels, musculoskeletal system, gastrointestinal tract…

    For a long time was used only x-rays. It had its pros and cons. The main disadvantage was the inability to see the pathology of the organ under investigation during its operation and to determine thus the exact location of the pathological focus, it changes during operation of the authority.

    • The opportunity to consider the fine details thanks to the good resolution films.
    • Lower levels of exposure. The x-rays for examination just a few seconds while the x-rays spent a minimum of 5 and a maximum of 20 minutes.
    • In this method, the document may be stored for a long time. If necessary, any time it can be re-considered, and not rely on the results of the survey, described by the radiologist on paper. This allows to draw conclusions about the dynamics of pathology, the correct diagnosis.
    • Radiography is not recommended often, and fluoroscopy is even more undesirable, given the higher exposure. However, in some cases, x-ray examination should be carried out periodically, resulting in additional exposure. For example, when controlling the dynamics of the course and therapy of lung diseases, after trauma operations, to assess the healing of bone disorders, accuracy and speed of consolidation of fractures. In such cases, dynamic observation give preference to x-rays.
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    • X-ray picture, or radiograph, is some total image of all the shadows. It is a flat three-dimensional image of the object. Therefore, in order to obtain reliable results the test item, conduct a couple of shots in different projections, sometimes more. Only a few pictures allow you to see the pathologic lesion from different angles.
    • The inability to assess the organ in its functioning. The radiograph allows us to see only one moment functioning of the body.


    Fluoroscopy object is projected onto the fluorescent screen. Also used x-ray translucence. The image of the nidus can be displayed on the screen to consider.


    1. This method allows to judge about the functioning of the studied organs. This is the main difference between radiography and fluoroscopy. For example, when fluoroscopy is possible to determine the adequacy of respiratory function according to the movements of the lungs, the contractions of the heart. It is possible to estimate the digestive tract by peristalsis, to determine the rate at which a radio-opaque substance, drunk by the patient, successively replacing different parts of the gastrointestinal tract. So diagnosed the changes of peristalsis of the internal lumen of the stomach and intestines in the different departments.
    2. You can monitor the catheterization of large vessels, angiography. It is possible to obtain three-dimensional image in a vertical or horizontal position.
    3. If you want to do research urgently, for example, when the patient’s condition, fluoroscopy allows you to do this as quickly as possible, without spending time to position the patient as necessary to see the lesion.
    4. Fluoroscopy allows us to estimate the body during its normal functioning and movement.
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    1. Exposure when fluoroscopy is different from that of radiography. To perform the screening required more time for examination. This is the main reason why the radiologist and the patient receives large doses of x-ray irradiation. During the study, the doctor has to be present near the x-ray machine in order to assess the functioning of the body for some time. However, the latter models differ from the old machines because the radiation dose in them reduced significantly, making them no more dangerous than x-rays.
    2. The fluorescent screen is not enough bright. Therefore, the image viewed in a dark room. That is not comfortable.
    3. The fluorescent screen has a low resolution. Therefore it is impossible to consider the fine details. This lack of screening will eliminate the purpose of radiographic studies.
    4. The ability to see small details is not only resolution. The can be long to review, display and discuss at the consultation. And fluoroscopy time allocated to research, rule-based, with the aim to avoid unnecessary exposure. The radiologist should be quite a good experience to see pathology with its features and to determine any diagnosis in such a short time. Today, however, with the advent of digital devices, it is possible to record the data and save them on discs, to view repeatedly, to put up for discussion at the consultations of doctors. Thus, this disadvantage can be eliminated.

    Sometimes used match the x-ray and fluoroscopy.

    The doctor who conducts screenings and makes x-ray pictures, if you want to capture certain moments in the work of an organ. Those with which, in his opinion, the most informative to judge the disease. It allows you to have the most informative images after the study to judge them different doctors. However, the digital capabilities of modern devices for fluoroscopy allowed us to avoid having two devices simultaneously.

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    Thus, it seems that the disadvantages of fluoroscopy are prevalent, but when you run it on modern machines, by contrast, are minimized.