doctor examining an x-rayAn X-ray is a widely used diagnostic test to examine the inside of the body. X-rays are a very effective way of detecting problems with bones, such as fractures. They can also often identify problems with soft tissue, such as pneumonia or breast cancer.

If you have a X-ray, you will be asked to lie on a table or stand against a surface so that the part of your body being X-rayed is between the X-ray tube and the photographic plate.

An X-ray is usually carried out by a radiographer, a healthcare professional who specialises in using imaging technology, such as X-rays and ultrasound scanners.

You can find out more about X-ray tests, how they are performed, their function and the risks by visiting the NHS Choices website.

We have a walk-in service for X-rays at St Margaret's Hospital in Epping. The Doctor needs to assess the need for the X-ray and send a request form electronically to the Radiology Department. The patient then attends and gives their details to reception. Opening times are contained in the leaflet below

XRay appointments information leaflet

Other Radiology tests such as Ultrasound, CT and MRI scans are available by appointment only and the range of tests available is limited compared to those ordered by hospital doctors. The Doctor will send the request form to the Radiology Department and an appointment will be sent to the patient by post.

Results are sent to the surgery electronically and we recommend that you contact the Results line 7 days after your test is carried out.

St Margaret's Hospital is not a Casualty department and so should not be used for X-rays following trauma where there is a concern that a bone has been broken as the result is not always available same day and treatment cannot be offered in the department.

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