Are Digital Xrays Safe On Patients With A Pacemaker?
A pacemaker is a device that assists the heart in regulating its rhythm. It was first developed in the 1950s and is named after its original inventor, Dr. Paul Janssen. Since then, it has become a mainstay of heart treatment, helping millions of people live more active lives. While many parts of a pacemaker are mechanical in nature, there are also electronic components that affect its functionality. For instance, the pulse generator is an electronic component that creates the electrical impulses that the heart is supposed to send to the rest of the body. The same electronic component could be the root of all the trouble if it malfunctions.
The risk of electrocution is a significant one when it comes to dealing with electronic components. This is why X-ray technicians must take specific precautions when taking an X-ray of a patient who has a pacemaker. They must ensure that the voltage of the X-ray equipment is not enough to fry the electronic components of the pacemaker. This is why digital xrays are preferred by cardiologists and other specialists who work with pacemakers. With newer technologies offering incredible levels of security and reliability and the cost of ownership being significantly lower, it is no wonder that more and more medical professionals are turning to digital xrays.
Why Are Digital X-rays Safer?
When an X-ray is exposed to the human body, a faint electrostatic charge can form on certain areas of the body. If this is not removed through sufficient shielding, it could cause significant harm to the patient. The main problem when it comes to conventional x-rays is the amount of radiation that they emit. While they only emit negligible amounts of X-rays at relatively low energies, even then it is not advisable for patients to be exposed to high doses. This is mainly because the harmful effects of radiation become more pronounced at higher doses. It is also not advisable to have an X-ray taken on a regular basis because the more often that you expose your body to X-rays, the greater the damage will be. This is especially problematic for children and for patients who have a longer life expectancy. To put it simply, the older you are, the greater the risk of being harmed by radiation.
While there are many harmful effects that X-rays can cause, they can also be used to view the insides of human bodies with amazing clarity. An X-ray technician will often use a Geiger counter to determine how much radiation is being emitted by the X-ray machine during an examination. The device is capable of detecting such low levels of radiation that it can be safely used by dental professionals who take X-rays of their patients’ mouths on a regular basis.
If a Geiger counter indicates that there is a risk of radiation, the technician must either reduce the voltage of the X-ray tube or remove the patient from the room. This is because voltage above a certain threshold will cause a Geiger counter to “click” even when there is no radiation present. Reducing the voltage will therefore reduce the number of harmful effects caused by radiation but may also reduce the quality of the X-ray if the voltage is too low. The advantage of reducing the voltage is that it does not harm the patient as much as increasing the voltage does. Another advantage of digital xrays is their brightness. Because digital xrays are created using a charge-coupled device (CCD) instead of a photo-tube, they are considerably brighter than their conventional counterparts. This can make a significant difference in terms of the quality of the image that is produced. It is also worth noting that because CCDs are more vulnerable to becoming damaged than are photo-tubes, they are also more expensive to buy and maintain.
The Difference In Quality
When taking a look at medical X-rays, there are significant quality differences between conventional and digital radiographies. Conventional X-rays are often captured on film and then developed using chemical solutions. The problem with this process is that it is very time-consuming (it can take several hours to produce a single image) and it is also very prone to errors because of the many steps involved. This is why many medical professionals prefer to use digital X-rays instead.
The difference in quality between conventional and digital X-rays is significant. One important factor to take into consideration is the contrast of the X-ray images. To put it simply, conventional X-rays will often reveal large amounts of information as long as they are not too bright. To ensure that they are not too bright, medical professionals will often have to reduce the exposure (i.e., the amount of radiation) or take a shorter exposure. This is often the case when taking X-rays of bones or teeth. In these situations, the contrast between the X-rayed object and the surrounding tissues will be significantly reduced since both will be at approximately the same brightness level. In a nutshell, if you want a higher quality image (for instance, in terms of the contrast between different tissues or the sharpness of the image), you must use a digital X-ray.
Saving Files For Later Use
The ability to save files for later use is another significant advantage of digital X-rays. This is because it is often the case that medical professionals will need to have a look at X-rays from several different angles to ensure that all the necessary information is captured. A conventional X-ray taken at one angle may not reveal everything that needs to be seen. It is therefore advisable to save the scan as a JPEG file and then study it later using a different tool. JPEGs are a type of electronic image that can be easily opened and saved for quick reference. It should be noted that although they are easy to open and use, JPEGs are nevertheless compressed files and therefore not ideal for storage. If possible, it may be preferable to use a DICOM file which is a type of image format that can be stored in a database and used for medical research purposes. DICOM stands for “Digital Imaging and Communication”. It was designed to facilitate medical research by providing a standardization of image formats and by making it possible to transmit image data over a network.
The above considerations are just some of the significant differences between conventional and digital X-rays. There are also a number of advantages that can be gained from switching to digital radiographies. If you are still deciding whether or not to make the switch, here’s a good place to start.