General Radiography / X-Ray

General radiography is an imaging technique that uses x-rays to acquire images of the body. Images are created as x-rays pass through the body and create different densities on an imaging plate. Structures in the body deflect and absorb x-rays differently; the resultant differing densities on the imaging plate create a 2D image of the body part that can then be printed on film.

Preparation – What to do before an x-ray

There is no preparation required for general radiography/x-ray. At Southern Radiology you do not require an appointment for general radiography /x-ray.

If you are pregnant it is imperative to advise our staff of this prior to your examination.

For all examinations we ask that you bring along any previous imaging you have of the area under investigation .

At Southern Radiology we require a written referral or request before undertaking any medical imaging examinations. Please ensure you bring your referral with you to your appointment.

For billing purposes please bring your Medicare card.

The procedure – What happens during an x-ray?

The exact procedure for any medical imaging examination depends on what is being imaged and why.

Although there will be slight variations in what you can expect when you attend a Southern Radiology practice for an x-ray, as a general guideline:

You will need to register with our secretarial staff upon arrival.
You may be required to fill out some safety and medical history paperwork before we can commence your test
You may be asked to change into a gown
For the actual x-ray you may be asked to lie on a table, stand or be seated. This will depend on the actual x-ray being taken.
You will be asked to remain still for the x-ray and may be given special breathing instructions.
You will have two or more views of each body part imaged.
Your attending radiographer will explain all aspects of your examination with you .Your consent will be sought prior to commencing the examination.

How long can I expect to be at Southern Radiology?

The duration of your visit includes the time it takes to:

register your details
complete safety and medical history paperwork
prepare for your examination
complete your x-ray
collect your films
General radiography typically only takes a few minutes but we advise you to check with our friendly secretarial staff on wait times when you arrive at the practice. Wait times will vary with the number of patients attending the practice at the time, as well as the clinical status of the patients.

Is it safe?

X-rays are a form of ionising radiation. All radiation is cumulative and has risks that cannot be avoided. X-rays are only performed where it is deemed the benefit of the examination will outweigh any potential risks. At Southern Radiology with the combination of digital technology, senior radiographers and the use of dose minimising techniques you can be assured that radiation doses are kept to as low as reasonably possible.


Southern Radiology is a leading diagnostic imaging provider who is committed to providing prompt and professional care to both patients and referrers. We are one of the largest medical imaging providers servicing the southern, inner western and eastern suburbs of Sydney and led by our specialist diagnostic imaging radiologists, Southern Radiology provides you comprehensive diagnostic support across all imaging modalities.

Our services include diagnostic radiology, interventional radiology, cardiac CT, magnetic resonance imaging, nuclear medicine and obstetric and gynaecological imaging. The Southern Radiology network consists of private community and hospital based practices, as well as two imaging research facilities.

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