What technique should I use?

What technique should I use is a question that I get many times during the course of the day.  It is very important to me that my students not only have a list of good techniques, but have the knowledge of why we are using a technique for a particular body area.  Having this knowledge will allow the student to make better decisions when adjusting for body habitus, age, or a particular pathology.

I am providing my general technique chart that I use with our digital CR equipment to give you a rough estimate for where to start.  Please note that each facility may be slightly different.

Body Part                Technique                    Grid(yes,no)           Part Thickness

PA Finger                 55kvp 2 mas                       no                                 4 cm

PA Hand                  55kvp 5mas                          no                                  6 cm

PA Wrist                    55kvp 5mas                        no                                 7 cm

AP Forearm              56kvp 5mas                      no                                  8cm

AP Elbow                   58kvp 5mas                     no                                    8cm

AP Humerus              70kvp 8mas                     yes                                 11cm

AP Shoulder              70kvp 10mas               yes                                     11cm

AP Clavicle                75kvp 10mas                yes                                      14cm

PA Chest                     120kvp 5mas               yes                                         21cm

AP Abdomen             80kvp 20mas               yes                                         20cm

AP Pelvis                      80kvp 20mas               yes                                        20cm

AP Femur                     80kvp 12mas            yes                                             16cm

AP Knee                       80kvp 6mas                yes                                           12cm

AP Tib/Fib                 65kvp 5mas                 no                                               11cm

AP Ankle                      60kvp 4mas               no                                               10cm

AP Foot                         60kvp 2mas               no                                              9cm

AP Toe                          56kvp  2mas                  no                                            4cm

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10 Responses to “What technique should I use?”

  1. Racheal says:

    75 KVP 10 MAS YES 14 CM

    * PA Chest 72 inch.

    120 KVP 5 MAS YES 21 CM

    * AP Abdomen

    This does not quite make sense. Also are these techniques for film screen, CR or DR? You can’t generalize techniques anymore.

  2. I can’t seem to get the formatting just the way I want it on here. I am going to make one more attempt. These are CR techniques that I use my new x-ray room.

  3. lisa donner says:

    Can you please give me information on Xrays for the cervical, thoracic and lumbar spines. My xrays are too dark and sometimes not very clear. What factors should I use and why? Please give me some help if you can. Thanks….

  4. Without seeing the actual x-rays it would be difficult to give the exact measures needed to correct the problem. I am assuming you are using film/screen because you mention they are to dark. I would suggest decreasing your kVp, usually if the x-ray is to dark it is over penetrated. This means you are using too much power and burning out the image. I have a sample technique chart posted, but it is for the units I use and would need to be adjusted for any other room. Here’s a good website to help make technique charts for your unit.( http://www.controlthedose.com/ ) If you want to email me the techniques you are currently using I would be happy to help you figure out the problem.


  5. andrew says:

    Can you give an example of how to convert mAs to mA & S.

    I’m trying to remember how to change fractions of time (S) to calculate mAs.

  6. Dana says:

    Hey X-ray Chic!

    I seem to have trouble when taking x-rays, on setting a good technique for a larger patient. What is a good way to know just how much more technique to use??

  7. TOM says:

    my chest xray all have the grid marks come out on them pretty noticeble do you know why??? TECH i been using 110kvp 5MAS 20cm…… ….. i have also used your tech but they all seem to come out with the grid lines pretty big and noticeble
    thanks for you time

  8. I hope you have found your solution…but most likely it is a grid line issue. There are several reasons this happens. You may not have proper tube to grid alignment, this often occurs on portable situations. Also, if you are using stationary equipment in the room your oscillating grid may not be oscillating :) If you are using newer equipment you may have an issue with your power source, or your digital processing system my not have the grid suppression feature in the “ON” mode.

    If anyone else has suggestions please leave your comments…but that’s what I can think of off the top of my head.

  9. James Phelps says:

    shooting OR L-spines x table (locator films) L5 S1 region whited out usually L4… T12 good use techniques from 80kv@200 mas to 90@320 sometimes hit twice any suggestions?
    I would appreciate any help

  10. My suggestion for a situation like that would be to use more KVP. KVP is your penetrating power and your best bet for shooting through a dense area such as the L5-S1 spot. The other really important factor is collimation. You can get much better detail if you can collimate down to the area of interest. If you are shooting onto a 14×17 you really only need a 7×17 film area to get everything you need, plus maybe an inch or so to ensure you have the needle on if you are checking needle placement. If you are using a film screen system you may still need to double expose in some very dense cases. If you are digital try using 120 KVP, and collimating.

    Does anyone else have suggestions?

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