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Pelvis X-ray

Definition

A pelvis x-ray is a picture of the bones surrounding the hip area. The pelvis connects the legs to the body.

Alternative Names

X-ray - pelvis

How the test is performed

The test is performed in a hospital radiology department or in the health care provider's office by an x-ray technician. You will be asked to lie down on the table. The pictures are then taken, with the body repositioned to provide different views.

How to prepare for the test

Inform the health care provider if you are pregnant. Remove all jewelry. You will wear a hospital gown.

How the test will feel

There is no discomfort except possibly from positioning the body.

Why the test is performed

The x-ray is used to detect fractures, tumors, or degenerative conditions of bones in the hips, pelvis, and upper legs.

What abnormal results mean

Abnormal results may suggest:

  • Pelvic fractures
  • Arthritis of the hip joint
  • Tumors of the bones of the pelvis
  • Sacroiliitis (inflammation of the area where the sacrum joins the ilium bone)
  • Ankylosing spondylitis (abnormal stiffness of the spine and joint)

What the risks are

There is low radiation exposure. However, pregnant women and children are more sensitive to the risks of x-rays.

References

Rogers LF, Taljanovic MS, Boles CA. Skeletal trauma. In: Grainger RC, Allison D, Adam, Dixon AK, eds. Grainger & Allison's Diagnostic Radiology. 5th ed. New York, NY: Churchill Livingstone; 2008:chap 46.

Review Date: 7/10/2009

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Information developed by A.D.A.M., Inc. regarding tests and test results may not directly correspond with information provided by UCSF Medical Center. Please discuss with your doctor any questions or concerns you may have.