X-ray ‘movie’ assists a variety of procedures
Video fluoroscopy is a medical imaging procedure involving X-ray technology and use of contrast dye to highlight movement of body parts that is then shown as images on a monitor. Fluoroscopy is a complement to a number of procedures that help diagnose or treat a wide variety of conditions. Video fluoroscopy is used with:
- Barium enema
- Cardiac catheterization
- Joint replacement and fracture treatment
- Pulmonary angiogram or coronary angiogram
- Stent placement
There is also a video fluoroscopic swallowing exam (VFSE) used to evaluate how well a patient is able to swallow.
Video fluoroscopy procedure
Depending on the type of procedure being performed, video fluoroscopy may be done on an inpatient (stay in the hospital) or outpatient (no overnight stay) basis. Your provider will give you instructions related to your particular procedure. Any procedure involving video fluoroscopy requires an intravenous (IV) line in your arm. While you are lying on an X-ray table, you will receive an injection of contrast dye that will then spread to the parts of the body being examined. The dye creates greater “contrast” and clarity in the X-ray images. X-ray images will be taken at different angles and will be projected onto a monitor. For cardiac catheterization, you will need an additional line inserted, usually in the groin or elbow, through which the catheter (thin tube) is threaded to the heart.
After the procedure you may have some soreness and minor bruising where the IV line was inserted. You will receive follow-up care instructions and your doctor will go over the results of the procedure with you.