Almonte General Hospital X-Ray Services
The Almonte General Hospital X-ray area has been expanded to accommodate new
equipment, a waiting area and change rooms. The X-ray area also includes
$450,000 in new X-ray equipment and a $250,000 Picture Archiving and
Communication System (PACS). PACS-the latest technology for the storage,
retrieval, distribution and presentation of radiology images-produced an
electronic image that can be read by radiologists at the Ottawa Hospital
An X-ray procedure must be ordered by a doctor.
Unless you are sent from the Emergency Department, you must have
an appointment, which is usually arranged by your doctor’s office. If you have been asked
to book the appointment yourself, please call 256-2514, extension 2232 to arrange the
When you arrive, please report to the Hospital Admission Office in the Almonte General
Hospital lobby. Be prepared to present your Health Card and your blue Almonte General Hospital
card (if you do not have a Hospital card you will be given one when you check in).
Make sure you have the completed requisition form your doctor has given you.
Wear clothing that is easy to remove. Do not wear jewellery.
If you are unable to keep your appointment, notify the X-ray department as soon as
How Do I Prepare for an X-ray?
Plain X-rays of the chest, abdomen, arms, legs and spine require no preparation and generally
take only a few minutes to complete.
Please report to the Admitting Department to register 10 to 15 minutes prior to your scheduled
Upper GI Series
An upper GI series is an upper gastrointestinal X-ray examination ordered by your doctor and
the procedure is performed by a Radiologist.
It requires you to drink a barium suspension (contrast medium) that is used to coat the
stomach wall so that it can be visualized with X-ray. This examination can identify problems
within the upper gastrointestinal tract, including the esophagus, stomach and small intestine
(see small bowel series).
What can I expect from the procedure?
Your stomach must be empty for this examination. Do not eat after 10 p.m. the night before
your appointment. If you take pills in the morning, you may take them as usual with a small sip
of water. Do not smoke, chew gum or swallow water when you brush your teeth. If you are
diabetic, tell staff when you are making your appointment so that it can be scheduled for a
time that suits your medications and dietary restrictions. If there is any possibility that
you are pregnant, tell the staff at the time of the booking.
During the procedure you will need to change into a hospital gown and the Radiologic
Technologist will position you on a special movable table behind an X-ray device called a
fluoroscope. You will be asked to drink liquid barium, which will produce air in your stomach,
with no ill effects. The Radiologist will ask you to assume various positions and take deep
breaths while he/she watches the movement of barium on a television monitor.
The procedure takes about 15 to 20 minutes.
Small Bowel Series
If you are also scheduled for a small bowel series, it will take considerably longer because
the barium is being observed as it passes through the entire small intestine (approximately 22
feet) until it reaches the colon. Average time for this examination is usually 1-2 hours.
After the procedure you may feel return to your regular diet, unless directed otherwise by
your doctor. Barium can cause constipation (and color your stool white) so it is recommended
that you drink several glasses of water or juice after the procedure to eliminate the barium.
If you are on a fluid-restricted diet, discuss your fluid intake with your doctor. A mild
laxative may also be used but discuss this with your doctor.
Your doctor will receive a written report about two working days after your procedure. A
report will be phoned to your doctor sooner, if a serious condition is found.
A barium enema, or lower GI series, is used to study disorders of the large intestine, colon
and rectum by using barium given by means of an enema. Barium is a safe, and is not absorbed
into the blood stream. If you are having an air contrast barium enema, air will be used along
with the barium during the examination.
What can I expect from the procedure?
After you change into a hospital gown, the Radiologic Technologist will position you on a
special movable table behind an x-ray device called a fluoroscope. You will be asked to lie
on your side so a lubricated enema tip can be inserted into your rectum. While the barium is
flowing through your colon the radiologist or physician assistant watches the movement of the
barium on a television monitor. (For air contrast barium enemas, air will be introduced after
the barium.) X-rays of selected areas will be taken while the colon is filling. Once the colon
is filled, the technologist will then use a different piece of x-ray equipment to evaluate the
entire lower digestive system. In order to get all the pictures needed for a barium enema series
you will be asked to turn in different positions and to hold your breath while the X-rays are
being taken. When the series of X-rays has been completed, you will be directed to the bathroom
to expel the barium. One last X-ray may be taken after some of the barium has been expelled.
The average time for a barium enema examination is 30 to 45 minutes.
After the procedure you may feel return to your regular diet, unless directed otherwise by your
doctor. Barium can cause constipation (and color your stool white) so it is recommended that you
drink several glasses of water or juice after the procedure to eliminate the barium. If you are
on a fluid-restricted diet, discuss your fluid intake with your doctor. A mild laxative may also
be used but discuss this with your doctor.
Your doctor will receive a written report about two working days after your procedure. A report
will be phoned to your doctor sooner, if a serious condition is found.
I.V.P. – Intravenous Pyelogram
An I.V.P. (intravenous pyelogram) is a special X-ray examination of the kidneys, ureters and the
bladder. X-ray dye is injected into a vein and it is filtered from the blood by the kidneys and can
be used to demonstrate kidney stones and other abnormalities of the urinary tract. The dye is removed
from the body in the urine.
The procedure takes 30 to 60 minutes, although it can be longer if stones are present.
- Preparation - If done on an emergency basis there is no preparation.
- If the procedure is booked, a clear fluid diet is required 1 day before the
exam - do not eat solid foods, eggs, milk or dairy products. Do not eat anything after 9 p.m.
the night before the examination. Clear fluids are permitted at any time. If you are diabetic
you may eat normally and take your medication as usual.
- Purchase one bottle of X-prep from any pharmacy and follow the instructions on the
What can I expect from the procedure?
During the procedure, the technologist will take a preliminary X-ray film to ensure the
kidney area is not obscured. You will be asked about your medical history and
allergies. If you have had a previous reaction to X-ray dye, it is
very important that you tell your doctor before the procedure begins.
Your doctor will inject X-ray dye into a vein in your arm or hand. As the solution is
injected, you may experience a metallic taste in your mouth and a mild warm sensation
throughout your body. These are normal reactions.
The technologist will then take a series of X-rays at timed intervals. The examination will
take about 45 minutes.
Mild allergic reactions such as itching and hives occasionally occur. These may go away
without treatment or may respond quickly to medication. If these reactions occur, they will
be explained and treated by the radiologist and/or physician.
After the procedure, the dye is gradually removed from your blood by your kidneys and stored
in your bladder until you urinate. The colour of your urine will not change. You may resume
your normal diet immediately, unless advised otherwise by your physician.
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