Do I Need X-Rays?

Do I Need X-Rays?
Healthcare providers in Arvada, Denver, and Wheat Ridge use X-rays to help diagnose a patient’s specific problem. You’ve probably had X-rays taken if you’ve ever had dental work or surgery. It’s no different when you visit a chiropractor in Arvada, Denver, or Wheat Ridge. X-rays allow the chiropractor to see areas of concern in the body that can’t be seen with the naked eye. In some cases, this is crucial for correctly diagnosing and treating the cause of your pain.

What Are the Benefits of X-rays?

X-rays let your chiropractor see the condition or misalignment of the joints in your body. X-rays can also reveal things like spinal lesions or tumors which can cause many of the symptoms that bring patients to a chiropractor’s office. It is very important to know if any type of growth is present because certain types of care (medical and chiropractic) shouldn’t be performed in those situations. That means X-rays can not only protect your health but can also produce better, faster results. Here are some common issues that our Denver Chiropractic office can detect by taking X-rays:

  • Alignment issues
  • Arthritis
  • Bone-density issues
  • Bone spurs
  • Bone separation
  • Cancer
  • Disk degeneration
  • Dislocation
  • Fractures
  • Infections
  • Narrowed joint spaces
  • Scarring
  • Scoliosis

X-rays are very important if there’s any reason to believe that you have a tumor, lesion or other similar underlying issue. Often, it’s impossible to fully rule out those possibilities without an X-ray. X-rays can also reveal any abnormalities in your spine, joints, or other area of the body. This vital knowledge helps your chiropractor make the right treatment decisions for your specific problem.

However, X-rays are really only effective when diagnosing conditions related to the bones and joints. If your chiropractor senses that your problem is an injured or torn tendon, ligament, or disc, they may recommend an MRI in addition to or instead of X-rays. It’s also very important to let your chiropractor know if you are pregnant before agreeing to X-rays. It is not recommended for pregnant women to have X-rays done.

What Situations Might Require X-Rays?

X-rays are not absolutely necessary for every patient. However, they can be very helpful for certain types of patients. Below are some specific conditions that may cause your chiropractor to feel X-rays should be taken:

  • You are over the age of 65
  • Tumors or cancerous growths are suspected
  • You have sustained a significant injury (e.g. a car crash)
  • An infection may be causing your pain
  • You have or are at risk for osteoporosis
  • Spinal instability is suspected
  • You are experiencing chronic pain that is not improving with treatment

Generally, X-rays are considered important if it will help you and your chiropractor make the right treatment decision. X-rays can streamline your treatment, eliminating unneeded guesswork. In fact, patients experiencing a worsening degenerative condition (e.g. osteoarthritis) can benefit greatly from a speedy diagnosis made using X-ray images.

Does Every Chiropractor Use X-Rays?

Not every chiropractor in Arvada, Denver, and Wheat Ridge uses X-rays during the diagnostic process. However, it’s impossible to know just how many do or do not. Chiropractors only take X-rays when it is important for the health and wellness of a patient. X-rays are used to confirm or rule out specific conditions.

Do You Have to Agree to Have X-Rays Taken When Seeing a Chiropractor?

Whether or not you have X-rays taken is ultimately up to you. Your chiropractor should explain their rationale for taking X-rays in your specific case. Of course, the reason for taking X-rays is to discover and treat the root cause of your problem as quickly as possible.

Can X-Rays Done by a Chiropractor Hurt Me?

Many patients have concerns about receiving X-rays because they’re worried about radiation. This is a very valid concern. However, your chiropractor will take into consideration your specific medical history to determine if you are in a high-risk category for X-rays. Keep in mind that today’s X-ray technology emits very low levels of radiation. In fact, the levels of radiation from spinal X-rays are like what you received on your last airplane flight or walk through your favorite mountain town. What’s more, precautions are taken during the X-ray process to reduce your exposure to radiation as much as possible. Of course, speak with your chiropractor if you have any concerns regarding X-rays. It’s also important to weigh the risks associated with X-rays against the risks of allowing a possibly dangerous condition to go undetected.

Do I Have to Have X-rays Taken by the Chiropractor?

X-Rays are not required for EVERY chiropractic patient. However, certain symptoms and circumstances justify the taking of X-rays. However, your chiropractor has a variety of techniques for detecting potential musculoskeletal issues. This is the reason your chiropractor takes a detailed health history and performs a thorough physical examination.

How Can I Have Chiropractic X-Rays Done?

Chiropractic X-rays are just one part of obtaining the right diagnosis for your problem. In fact, X-rays are typically only taken after a complete history of your problem is discussed and a complete physical exam is performed. Your chiropractor will then use that information to determine if an X-ray would be beneficial for your specific case.

If you think you’re experiencing a bone, joint or spinal issue that might require an X-ray, contact our office as soon as possible. Our providers specialize in finding the cause of your problem and treating it quickly so you can get back to living your life! Call Integrative Health and Rehabilitation today at (303) 424-7171, by text: (833) 210-3525, or email: to schedule a FREE consultation.

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