When your physician needs to investigate a chronic cough, fever, abdominal ache or bone injury, diagnostic x-rays are a frequent, quick and effective imaging tool utilized for illness or injury evaluation.

X-rays are noninvasive tests that use x-ray beams which are passed through the body and captured on a computerized detector from which an image is made. X-rays may be performed on any body part. Although diagnostic x-rays use radiation, the amount for most exams is generally less than you would receive over the course of a year from the sun.

Fluoroscopy is a tool which helps the Radiologist “see” inside the human body.  The physician is able to examine a patient’s vascular system, anatomical structures, and organs with the aid of fluoroscopy.

Talk to your physician about the risks of ionizing radiation.  The amount of radiation used during a procedure can vary due to a many factors such as patient size and procedure duration. The Radiologist will make every effort to utilize the lowest amount of radiation necessary to safely complete the procedure.

If there is any possibility you may be pregnant, please notify your physician.

There is a risk for patients who are allergic to contrast dye.  Please notify your doctor if you have a history of allergic reaction to contrast, iodine, latex, or medication.  Patients with kidney problems should also notify their physician.  

There may be other risks depending on your specific medical condition. Feel free to ask questions and discuss any concerns with the Radiologist prior to the procedure.  Your physician can explain how the clinical benefits of fluoroscopy outweigh the risks of radiation exposure during the medical procedure.  

A majority of GI (gastrointestinal) studies such as esophagram, Upper GI Small Bowel Follow-through and other gastrointestinal procedures will be performed within 60 minutes.

Most GU (genitourinary) studies such as Cystograms, VCUG, RUG (Retrograde Urogram) and other  Genitourinary imaging procedures will be performed within 60 minutes.

Lower GI (gastrointestinal) procedures, such as Barium Enema, require at least 90 minutes.

Routine X-rays are done within 10 to 15 minutes.

All medications can be taken prior to an exam as prescribed however with minimal amounts of water. If medication requires food it may be taken any time after the completion of the exam.

No sedation is required for any X-Ray and Fluoroscopy procedures.

There is no need for a driver or additional assistance following any X-Ray of Fluoroscopy procedure unless normally required.

If your study requires consumption or administration of barium sulfate it is recommended that you mildly increase your fluid intake after the exam.


Barium Sulfate is a dense and inert (not chemically reactive) product that will remain within the gastrointestinal tract in trace amounts.

Dependent upon a patient’s motility a mild laxative could be helpful with the evacuation of residual barium sulfate. Consult your physician prior to using any laxative, it may cause dehydration.

After the completion of the exams you will be able to resume your regular diet and activities unless informed otherwise by your physician.

After the completion of the exams you will be able to resume your regular diet and activities unless informed otherwise by your physician.

The Radiologist interprets the results within a few days and the report should go out in about 5-7 working days. For your results please consult your Primary Care Physician or check MyChart.

We thank you for choosing UC Davis Health Radiology for your medical imaging.