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Old 10-20-2009, 09:28 PM   #1
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what can an xray see?

My question is......how big does something have to be before it is picked up on an xray? pin head size, pea size, half an inch ..... ?

 
Old 10-21-2009, 07:54 AM   #2
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Re: what can an xray see?

that kind of depends upon just what you are looking for and what it consists of as a 'structure' type thing? x rays will only show the more solid boney type structures or certain things like calcifications. it just has to have alot of harder density to it before it would even begin to show upon plain x ray. do you get what i mean? just exactly what was the real reason for the x ray to even be ordered? depending upon just what it is the doc is looking for would really dictate the best type of real 'scan' in order to even have it show up. does that help? if you could let me know the situation it would really help alot. FB
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Old 10-21-2009, 12:05 PM   #3
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Re: what can an xray see?

Hi. My 35 year old friend just had a lung xrayed, as she thought she might have pneumonia. Apparently the xray does not show signs of pneumonia. However, the xray did show some sort of nodule, which is, apparently, less than 1 mm (which I believe is one twentyfifth of an inch).

I'd read somewhere that is was impossible to see something less than 1 CM on an xray, so am wondering if she's confused and perhaps the technician said it was 1 CM rather than 1 MM.

Also, the doctor didn't appear concerned. If it truly is only 1 mm, is that really of no concern at all? and would something so small be a common finding on many people's xrays? I was really surprised that the doctor didn't think it was a big deal.

Thanks for any advice you can offer.

 
Old 10-22-2009, 09:32 AM   #4
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Re: what can an xray see?

when anything that gets found upon any type of scan is just simply not supposed to actually be there, it does require some much deeper in depth testing just to really find out what it consists of and why its even there kind of thing? the fact that is mere 1mm finding actually showed up at all upon the plain x ray would indicate that it probably has a more dense type of inside or make up? i personally would want this checked out in some way if it were a finding in MY lung. she should probaly seek out like a pulmanologist maybe? they deal with lung issues.

what i am kind of suprised to hear that this would be stated by an actual doc is about an x ray of the chest/ lungs NOT being able to really show signs of pneumonia?? this really is the very basic standard of seeing if someone possibly has pneumonia actually. it would usually show fluid in the lungs, or a possible thickening of an area within the inner lining of the lung among other crappy stuff. thats a new one on me. just about every single person i know,including my mom, twice, who has had pneumonia actually had it confrimed with a chest x ray. also listening to the lungs really helps to confirm.

the bigger thing you need to always keep in mind here, espescially with our primary docs is what they actually have seen or just know about in their own practice kind of dictates in many cases as how 'important' any real finding upon any scan actually is, you know what i mean? some could blow off something that another more experienced doc(who has actually dealt with that type of finding before?) would immediately send the patient to a certain type of specialist for. if i were your friend i seriously would tell her primary that she just WANTS to be certain that what this doc is blowing off in HER lung, not his, is not a something by sending her for at the very least here, an eval/ consult with a pulmanologist just to be certain. in light of that one finding, she does have the right to be sent to the appropriate type of doc for a better opinion, or EXPERIENCED opinion, espescially if she has been exhibiting lung problems/symptoms that actually led her to think she had pneumonia, ya know? the symptoms still have not been given a real solid Dx, which just also ups that need to seek out the specialists help too. if her doc cannot simply tell her what is causing this then he needs to send her to someone who can. its that simple. this is obviously over this guys head. if i were her i would simply ask and push to get that referral from her doc. this is just what any primary doc should do when a patient has something going on that they cannot figure out or really Dx. thats just part of their job, to get patients to the right types of docs for their medical issues. hopefully her doc will just do this referral for her to at least find the reason for her symptoms and to possibly explain just what that 1mm finding is all about. it could also just be a small type of calcification too which would show up upon x ray just becasue of its make up. 1mm just really IS very very tiny. i wish her luck with this. please keep me posted as to what she finds out. FB
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Old 10-23-2009, 04:16 PM   #5
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Re: what can an xray see?

That's strange. I replied to this last night!

Later.

 
Old 10-25-2009, 11:22 AM   #6
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Re: what can an xray see?

Thanks for the reply. Like you, I would definitely be pushing for answers, sooner rather than later.

Sorry I wasn't clear re xrays/pneumonia. What I meant was that they did not see signs of pneumonia on "her" xray (not that pneumonia couldn't be detected by an xray). Sorry for the confusion.

As for her doctor's experience with these types of things, I'm just not convinced she knows much about it. When my friend asked about the size of the nodule, the doctor first said, a couple times, that it was 'just small'. Just small??? Then she answered that it was probably only 1 mm. If it was her (the doctor's) lungs, would she be fine with the answer "just small"? Personally, if my doctor didn't think it was a big deal, I think I'd probably be looking elsewhere. My goodness.....if it's not a big deal, then at least prove that to me. Nope - I wouldn't be blown off.

I agree that she needs to get some answers quickly.......if not an immediate referral to a specialist, then certainly bloodtesting that, from what I've read, can at least determine is something is likely calcification...

Any suggestions on what blood tests she should be asking for? It seems like my friend is going to have to be pro-active on this one...

Thanks again.

 
Old 10-26-2009, 08:14 AM   #7
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Re: what can an xray see?

unfortunetly the lungs are not an area of real expertise with me, sorry. so i really would not even begin to actually even know if any blood work could show something at all really. this is why i really think her best bet would be just to have a referral for a consult, with the films in hand by a good pulm specialist. they know this stuff that most, and definitely this one, docs do not. if i were her and this doc wont refer her to a pulm doc, i would seriously start looking for a much more caring primary doc. this is just well over any primarys head and that alone is reason for that referral to someone who does, ya know? given what was found uponthe x ray and the fact she has been exhibiting enough symptoms that she felt she may have had pneumonia,well its kind of a no brainer for her primary just to send her. she STILL has not been Dxed at all with anything about the lung issues and what that finding actually is. a good pulmanologist in many cases, just only has to look at the films and would probably be able to actually tell her right off the top of his or her head, just what that finding actually is. this is what they simply 'see' in this specialty. she just needs to tell her primary that she wants a real Dx of her symptoms and also find out what that finding is and means for her. any primary just owes this to their patients anytime something is simply above their expertise/ability to dx. if she wont do this, just fire the uncaring doc and find a much better one. they ARE out there. i do hope things are not bad for your friend and everything gets better. just tell her she has the right to push to see that specialist whenever a primary cannot give answers. please keep me posted, by the way, you are a really great friend. FB
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3-22-01,herniated C-6-7
11-20-01,placement of hardware for failed fusion
9-22-03,removal of cavernous hemangioma that was inside spinal cord. Neuro damage to L hand L leg and R leg.

 
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