Abdominal X-ray - System and anatomy

Tutorial key points

  • Check the patient details
  • Assess quality
  • Systematically review bowel gas, soft tissues, bones and abnormal calcification

Related tutorials

Although anatomy of the abdomen is complicated, many structures are not clearly defined on a radiograph of the abdomen, and therefore cannot be fully assessed.

A systematic approach to abdominal X-ray interpretation is therefore relatively straightforward. This involves assessment of the bowel gas pattern, soft tissue structures, and bones. Full assessment includes a check of patient data, image quality, and checking for artifact and abnormal calcification.

This tutorial will discuss these steps.

Page author: Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust UK (Read bio)

Last reviewed: February 2016