X-ray Scans Near Atlanta
A Chiropractor may recommend X-ray treatment as a standard practice, either as a proactive step to rule out pathology (such as a possible fracture or tumor) or to help in determining where to adjust the spine.
With that said, it may be reasonable to consider an X-ray if after several weeks there is an absence in symptom improvement.
Chiropractors and X-Ray Studies
Depending on the nature of your condition, as well as a number of other components, X-ray studies of your spine or injured body part may be needed.
Chiropractors receive over 300 hours of X-ray studies in college before graduating and in this manner are fully trained to take radiographs and identify subtle anomalies of the spine as well as more significant pathologies.
Chiropractic X-Rays Are Safe and Provide Valuable Information
X-rays are a fairly safe and cost effective way to view the structure and overall condition of the spine.
They can identify spinal regions under high stress and expose areas undergoing degenerative change.
This can often provide vital information which correlates examination findings with history, allowing for a more precise spinal analysis and a more tailored and effective treatment plan.
X-rays are also advantageous when assessing the propriety of chiropractic care, as they can help to rule out more serious injuries such as spinal fractures, tumors, and infections, which require emergency medical intervention.
Procedures Used To Minimize Radiation Exposure
While extended exposure to radiation can potentially be harmful to the body, diagnostic X-rays taken by the chiropractic doctor pose a minimal threat to one’s health.
In fact, according to radiation guidelines for diagnostic X-ray studies, it would take an excess of 300 full spine X-rays for these guidelines to apply to an individual.
In addition, the following steps are in place to further minimize the amount of X-ray exposure:
- High frequency equipment reduces exposure times, giving you much less radiation exposure than normal X-ray equipment
- Only necessary views will be taken, eliminating unnecessary X-ray exposure
- Collimation to narrow the X-ray beam to include areas of interest only
- Shielding & filtration to block or reduce the X-ray beam from affecting delicate tissues and areas of non-diagnostic interest
- Rare earth (intensifying) screens can cut X-ray exposure by 50 percent
- Grids to reduce scatter radiation and improve X-ray quality
- High speed film lowers exposure time
- Minimal exposure times of just 10ths of a second
- Regular changing of processor chemicals to give high quality, diagnostic films
- Increasing kilovoltage and minimizing milliamperage further reduces X-ray dosage
- Indications for X-rays in Chiropractic Health Care
X-rays are generally recommended in the following cases:
- If an infection may be causing the patient’s discomfort
- If the patient has suffered a significant traumatic injury, as a joint may be dislocated or a bone may be broken
- If a significant disease is suspected, such as cancer or a possible tumor
- If the patient is over age 50 and has sustained any type of trauma (even a minor one)
- If any type of joint disease is thought to be present, such as arthritis causing joint pain
- For most patients over 65 years of age
- If the patient has had long-standing pain or discomfort that has not responded to or resolved with previous treatment
- Any suspected spinal instability
- Anyone who has been diagnosed with or at risk for osteoporosis. The X-ray may be important to identify or exclude the possibility of vertebral fracture from osteoporosis.
As a general guideline, an X-ray is called for if it is likely to have an impact on the type of treatment recommended for the patient.
In any of the cases referenced above, an X-ray would likely provide important information that will direct referral options and/or treatment protocols for the patient.
X-Ray Treatment and Education
Some questions that may be asked of the chiropractor include:
- Does the chiropractor suggest an X-ray? If so, why?
- Stay away from chiropractors who insist on taking X-rays of every patient, regardless of what is wrong.
- If an X-ray is taken, how do the findings correlate to the patient’s pain, symptoms, and history?
It is common for an X-ray to identify problems with the spine, though the patient is experiencing no symptoms.
If the patient doesn’t have pain and the practitioner recommends continued chiropractic treatments based on the X-ray, it is recommended to get a second opinion from another chiropractor or medical professional.
This same general rule holds for MRI scans or any other type of testing.
Avoid a chiropractor who compares a patient’s X-ray to a “textbook” spine as validation for extensive treatment, with assurances that the patient’s spine can be changed.
The goal isn’t to have an anatomically perfect spine, but to optimize the overall health of each individual’s unique spinal composition.
If a chiropractor is offering a high-tech test, patients should consider researching the efficacy of the test before agreeing to it.
Certain types of tests (surface EMG scan, for example) may seem impressive but actually have little or no scientific data backing their use and don’t really help in making treatment decisions.
AICA Atlanta Can Administer X-ray Treatment If Necessary
Our Atlanta Chiropractic clinic can provide X-ray treatment if you have suffered from some type of ailment or condition for an excessive amount of time and have not yet found the root source of your pain.
We offer state-of-the-art technology that can pinpoint the specific location of your injury, allowing your Chiropractor to recommend the most appropriate treatment solution that offers immediate relief and prevents further damage from taking place.
Our office welcomes walk-in visits, although you can schedule a FREE consultation by filling out our online submission form or by calling us at (404) 889-8828.
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