Sunday, 3 March 2013

Top 10 Tips: For Radiographers New To Theatres

1.    Introduce yourself to as many people, especially surgeons, as possible. Doctors are often very          grateful and accepting when they learn you are new and are willing to guide you. Most doctors like things done a certain way and will be happy to teach you to get it right the next time. They generally don’t like it when you pretend you know what you’re doing and stuff it up!

2.     Familiarise yourself with the II. Know which buttons/levers move the machines in which directions so you know how to move the machine quickly and confidently.

3.     Be aware of where/how far you need to move the machine and clear all possible obstacles (e.g. cables, IV poles/lines, anything under the operating table) and ensure that the screens are visible to both yourself and the surgeon and won’t need to be moved during the case

4.     For urology/op chole/general abdo area cases – come in perpendicular to the patient. E.g. with an RGP, centre to the correct side of the patient and turn the wheels so the machine will move straight up and down the patient

5.     For orthopaedic cases such as hands, wrists, forearms, elbows – turn the machine so the II is on the bottom and the tube on top as surgeons will often rest the limb on the II

6.     For spinal cases (depending on doctor preference) – the machine may need to be flipped so that it can be swung over the top of the patient to get a shoot through lateral. Test this before you come into the theatre

7.     For hip cases – you may bring the machine in through the patient’s legs or the unaffected leg will be lowered and you’ll come in from the unaffected side. You’re not quite perpendicular to the patient but the angle depends on the patient set up and is usually guided by the surgeon. Centre over the hip for the AP and swing under the table for the lateral.

8.     Only screen when the surgeon asks and stop when they say or when they are no longer looking at the screen. Always ask before you screen if you want to check your position and make sure everyone in the room is wearing or is protected by lead.

9.     If the doctor doesn’t ask, save images at significant points (e.g. when contrast is seen, when screws/plates have been inserted)

10. Make use of both image screens i.e. save older images to the other screen as a reference. E.g. with hip cases, as you frequently change from AP to Lat, save the last image before you switch positions so the surgeon can compare from both angles


  1. Thanks for sharing this information! I have been looking into x-ray equipment and how they might be able to help me learn more about it! But this blog really has been helpful! Can you tell me where I can find more information like this? Thanks!

  2. Thanks for posting! I've actually been looking for some x-ray equipment lately, and so this was good to read. Thank you. :)

  3. Great post! I am in search of some x-ray equipment. Do you have any suggestions on where I can find some? Thanks.

  4. thanks for the information, im a new graduate and think this site is wonderful!

  5. One more thing for new radiographer, the starting salary is $42,000 - $45,000 per year, source:

  6. My brother is selling x-ray equipment a lot right now. It seems to be going really well for him.

  7. Nice post its so informative for me thanks for sharing this post!
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  10. These are really great tips to those radiography looking for radiography jobs

  11. My friend is getting ready to open his first animal clinic. He is looking into getting some x-ray equipment. Do you know where he would buy it and about how much it costs? Thanks!

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  13. This is a great blog! As I have been through school I have discovered that there is so much to know on x-rays and so much equipment for them! I have been looking at all the equipment and have been shocked by how much there is. Thanks for sharing!
    Suzy |

  14. This is great information for people new to the industry or looking at entering. I like the fact that you have put in stuff to do with when to do and not to do practices like screening. And that you put in about the wearing of safety equipment in point 8. Never want anyone exposed to the radiation unless they are the one being scanned.

  15. Is it true that X-Ray's are bad for you? I have gotten a few in the last year and it always has me wondering. It also fascinates me how you can have a machine to see the bones and nothing else.

    Will Jenkins |

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  17. I always wondered why people needed to where lead. It's interesting that x-rays can harm people if they're not protected. They can do so many cool things with x-rays. I wouldn't have known about a broken bone poking into my kidney if we didn't have x-ray. Pretty handy stuff if you ask me.

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