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Chest X-ray introduction learning module

Chest X-ray introduction module

http://info.med.yale.edu/surgery/anatomy/webactivities/x_ray_explained_content.php

Yale School of Medicine

The goals of this exercise are to
1. Begin to develop an understanding of the role that the shape of structure plays in the absorption of X-rays that pass through its various parts
2. Appreciate that a radiograph can discriminate among only four levels of tissue density
3. Begin to understand the importance of contrast in identifying the boundaries between tissues

SUMMARY
– A radiograph can discriminate four densities: air, fat, water and bone. Most soft tissues including muscle have the density of water
– These properties have implications for visualizing the boundaries of organs
– For example, if the lungs (mostly air) are normal, the boundary of the heart will be clear
– However, if a lung is filled with fluid (water), the boundary of the heart will be lost, since muscle has the same radiographic density as water

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