Fluoroscopy

X-ray_webVancouver Radiologists, P.C., offers a complete range of digital fluoroscopy services for our patients.  Providing patients with access to the most advanced technology for accurate diagnosis is a priority of our practice.  With our state of the art equipment, you’ll also have the confidence of trained personnel. Among our radiologists, you will find fellowship trainied and board certified physicians and all of our technologists are certified by the American Registered Radiological Technologists (ARRT).

Fluoroscopy procedures require an order from your physician and may also require pre-authorization from your insurance provider.   A co-pay and/or deductible may apply.  Please check with your health insurance provider for benefits.

What is Fluoroscopy?

Fluoroscopy is a form of “live x-ray” that enables a radiologist to take images of the body’s internal organs via x-ray, utilizing a contrast agent (also known as a “contrast medium”).  The contrast agent increases the visibility of the internal organs or a specific area of concern, as a radiologist watches on a television screen.  Contrast agents may be introduced to the body through injections, swallowing, or in select cases, an enema.

Fluoroscopy includes many different types of studies:

  • Esophagram / Barium Swallow – a study of the throat
  • Upper GI – a study of the esophagus, stomach, and duodenum (first portion of small intestine)
  • Small Bowel Series – a study of the stomach and entire small intestine
  • Barium Enema – a study of the large intestine (colon and rectum)
  • Hysterosalpingogram – a study of the uterus and fallopian tubes
  • Intravenous Pyelography  (IVP) – a study of the kidneys, ureters, and the urinary bladder
  • Cystogram  / *Voiding Cystogram – a study of the bladder, or bladder and urethra (voiding)

*For pediatric studies, mild sedation is available upon request.  All patients under the age of 18 years old must be accompanied by a responsible adult who has authority to give Informed Consent on behalf of the minor patient.  For exams using sedation, additional observation time post-procedure is required and is based on the exam as well as the individual.

If sedation is requested, you will receive a call from our office with additional information, and to answer your questions, a day or two before your procedure.   As always, if you have questions or concerns before or after your procedure, please contact us and ask to speak to one of our Patient Navigators at (360)254-4914.

Be sure to tell a member of the health care team if you:                           

  • are pregnant or think you may be
  • have any known allergies, including previous reaction to x-ray contrast

In addition to those questions above, for studies that use IV contrast – please inform us if you:

  • are breast feeding, as it is optional to discontinue for 24 hours after the procedure
  • have any medical conditions such as asthma, heart disease and / or kidney issues
  • are diabetic, and take metformin /glucophage

Prepping for a procedure

  • Esophagram / Barium Swallow:  Nothing to eat or drink after midnight the day before the exam.  No smoking or gum chewing 2 hours before the exam.
  • Upper GI Series:  Nothing to eat or drink after midnight the day before the exam.  No smoking or gum chewing 2 hours before the exam.
  • Small Bowel Series:  Follow a clear liquid diet the day before the exam.  No sugar or dairy products.  Take 4 Biscodyl (laxative) tablets at 4pm on the day before the exam.  You may pick up the Biscodyl tablets at any local pharmacy, or at either of our clinic locations.  Nothing to eat or drink after 6pm the evening before the exam.  No smoking or gum chewing 2 hours before the exam.
  • Upper GI w/ Small Bowel Series:  Follow a clear liquid diet the day before the exam.  No sugar or dairy products.  Take 4 Biscodyl (laxative) tablets at 4pm on the day before the exam.  You may pick up the Biscodyl tablets at any local pharmacy, or at either of our clinic locations.  Nothing to eat or drink after 6pm the evening before the exam.  No smoking or gum chewing 2 hours before the exam.
  • Barium Enema:  Please pick up the exam prep and instructions two days prior to the exam at either of our clinic locations.
  • Hysterosalpingograms:   Please take 200-400 mg of ibuprofen 2-3 hours before exam.  This exam should be scheduled between the 7th and 12th day of your menstrual cycle, with no active bleeding and no current infections. We suggest you refrain from strenuous activity for the first 24 hours post procedure. *You will be provided specific discharge instructions after the procedure.
  • Intravenous Pyelogram (IVP):  Follow a clear liquid diet the day before the exam.  No sugar or dairy products.  Take 4 Biscodyl (laxative) tablets at 4pm on the day before the exam.  You may pick up the Biscodyl tablets at any local pharmacy, or at either of our clinic locations.  Nothing to drink after 6pm the evening before the exam.  You may drink up to 8oz of clear fluid the morning of your exam.  You can take morning medications 2 hours prior to exam with small amount of water or wait until after the exam is complete.
  • Cystogram /*Voiding Cystogram (VCUG):   No current infections or patient should be actively taking antibiotics.  *For pediatric exams using sedation, the patient should not eat solids for 4 hours prior to the scheduled exam time – sips of water / clear liquids okay.  If bottle or breast feeding, the last feeding should be at least 2 hours prior to exam. *You will be provided specific discharge instructions after the procedure.

During a fluoroscopy procedure

A member of our health care team will review your clinical history and discuss the procedure with you prior to the examination.  If you have any questions or concerns during your exam, please ask your technologist.  The technologist will ensure that the images taken are complete and accurate, before you leave the clinic; however please note, that the technologist does not interpret the images.

After a fluoroscopy procedure

Each exam may consist of a series of x-ray images. Our radiologist will review and interpret your images.  Procedure results will be communicated to your healthcare provider to discuss with you.  If you have not been contacted with results within 48 hours, please contact your healthcare provider.