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Q&A: Are X-rays safe while pregnant?

I’m 18 weeks pregnant and I recently injured my foot. I’m afraid to get x-rays while pregnant, but I’m also afraid of ignoring my foot injury. What should I do?

Re: I’m 18 weeks pregnant and I recently injured my foot. I’m afraid to get x-rays while pregnant, but I’m also afraid of ignoring my foot injury. What should I do?

The Bump Expert Of course, you’d rather be safe than sorry and skip getting your foot x-rayed, but you might be acting overly cautious. It’s usually safe to get certain x-rays while pregnant. For your own peace of mind, visit your doctor first and see if a diagnosis can be made without an x-ray. If not, just make sure to alert the medical staff that you’re pregnant so they can give you a protective shield. Most diagnostic x-rays (abdominal, dental, and chest x-rays) don’t overexpose the fetus to radiation. The dangerous range for a fetus -- meaning where you risk mental retardation and eye abnormalities -- is 10 rads (rads are the unit of measurement for absorbed radiation). But it’s rare for a single or a group of diagnostic x-rays to be more than 5 rads. A chest x-ray, for example, is 60 millirads. During the course of an average pregnancy, a mother and her fetus are exposed to 90 to 100 millirads just from natural radiation from sources like the sun. Also, your foot is nowhere near your reproductive organs, so that also makes the procedure less risky.

Bump Dara

re: Q: X-rays okay while pregnant?

I had to get an x-ray when I broke my tooth in my first trimester, but it was digital which is suposed to have even lower rad levels.

AliciaSpring |

re: Q: X-rays okay while pregnant?

i had two x-rays during my second trimester - one on my head and one on my chest (plus two mri's)-- they'll put shields around your belly and my doctor said that xrays go in straight lines so baby should be fine!

gulbyholloman |

re: Q: X-rays okay while pregnant?

This was a great question b/c I also have been having foot pain and tried to let it heal on its own but it's been 3 weeks now and I'm thinking I might need an x-ray. I am 23 weeks along.

jbahrenburg |

re: Q: X-rays okay while pregnant?

I recently opted out of dental x-rays on a routine check-up. I was exposed to x-rays daily on the job until I got pregnant (veterinary technician) so my exposure level is higher than most.

KitKat307 |

re: Q: X-rays okay while pregnant?

While at the dentist when I was pregnant, the hygentist told me they don't even cover anyone up with the lead vest in Europe during x-rays because supposedly it's unnecessary...

Asquared |

re: Q: X-rays okay while pregnant?

The most cautious time getting x-rays when you are pregnant is mostly when you are in your first trimester especially over the abdomen. Many people don't know that they are exposed to natural radiation all the time. I work in the x-ray field as a technologist and we are in the room while doing x-rays while being pregnant. Of course we do wear lead aprons which blocks 98% of x-rays being absorbed by the body. Yes it is true that x-rays do come out in straight lines there is sometimes scatter radiation and that is the reason for the wearing of a lead apron while being x-rayed. Not that long ago we used to do x-rays when women were in labor to make sure the baby could fit through the pelvis to be delivered vaginally and babies were fine. I am an RT(R) by the way so I do take x-rays.

carebear43412 |

Q&A: Are X-rays safe while pregnant?

I have a lapband which is a device that has been put in around my stomach to loss weight. 70 pounds lighter I find myself pregnant. They use an x-ray machine to take out liquid that will loosen my band so I can eat more. Do you think that would be harmful? I am thinking yes because of where they will be xraying. Does anyone else have a lapband and has been pregnant?

maritcarrot@hotmail.com |

Q&A: Are X-rays safe while pregnant?

oh my. There is a reason why they give every sexually active woman a pregnancy test before x-raying them. Of course, if there is something emergent, then do it. But "your foot being no where near your reproductive organs" is ridiculous. When we do xrays, they make us wear a lead vest and stand behind a lead screen if we are even in the same room...

kloesk |

Q&A: Are X-rays safe while pregnant?

I am an R.T.(R) as well, but I work in a Urology Clinic where I do CTs. I have pts that come in after they have been injected for a bone scan( a nuclear medicine study) so they are radioactive. I have to sit next to them while I start their IV for the CT and I am really paranoid about this. Anyone else had this situation. Right now I have a lab tech that knows I am pregnant so she is trying to start their ivs for me.

xraymommy |

Q&A: Are X-rays safe while pregnant?

first tell them you are pregnant and see what they say.. they might ask you to get a note from your OB/GYNif you are pregnant and if he says you can you should

myfirstbaby1 |

Q&A: Are X-rays safe while pregnant?

That was a great question because i just recently broke/sprang/fractured my foot on Easter night & today i just went to go get x-rays on my foot my OB doctor said it was fine but the guy who did my x-rays kinda scared me & my dad a little because he said theirs a risk to mental retardation & other physical problems that may happen & we had to sign a paper to give the okay for the x-ray.But i thought my foot is no where near my belly so is their really a risk and my dad told me that its because of the radiation that gives the baby a risk.But I did get a vest thingy to wear to protect the baby like those jacket thingys you have to put on at the dentist when examining your teeth.

cutelilmexican |

Q&A: Are X-rays safe while pregnant?

As an x-ray technician, it is our job to protect patients and the general public from radiation. We do not normally x-ray pregnant patients unless it is absolutely necessary. You always have to weigh the cost versus benefits. You need to look at the urgency of getting your foot treated, and the long term consequences if you don't, etc. If I was pregnant, I would avoid x-rays especially abdominal, pelvic, hip, and back. These are higher dose radiation, and they are around the region of the ovaries. It is not true that all pregnant women get chest x-rays, that is ridiculous. Usually extremities like hands and feet are not as much of a concern because they are not near the ovaries. We always cover the belly with doubled lead, so any scatter radiation the belly may receive, would just hit the apron. I hope this helps

Mariuz |

Q&A: Are X-rays safe while pregnant?

I am an x-ray / CT tech, x-rays are potentially dangerous to a developing fetus especially during the first trimester. However there is a way to protect the fetus during an x-ray. Make sure you inform the technologist of your pregnancy and they will shield your abdomen. Once your abdomen is shielded it will prevent x-rays from reaching the fetus. Regular x-rays such as a foot x- ray use very low amounts of radiation in a very controlled manner, the risks are very very low. Now if something worse happens and a doctor recommends a higher dose exam such as a CT. Have a discussion with your doctor to weight the risks and the benefits of such an exam. Shielding is still utilized during exams like CT, however the risks of radiation exposure the the fetus is higher due to the higher dose of radiation.

wacko61 |

Q&A: Are X-rays safe while pregnant?

I had my feet x-rayed for bunions before I knew I was even pregnant with my first son, he had an acardiac twin-probably has nothing to do with the x-ray, but you never know. as far as mental retardation or vision problems-nothing. I'm an RN in critical care, so my patients are always getting x-rays, the hospital has shielding built into the structure, so being out of the room during the x-ray should be enough, but I'm sure it adds to my background radiation exposure. My second son has to be sedated for MRI's every 6 months or so, usually I sit in the MRI suite with him, just in case he wakes up (or doesn't), the hospital doesn't want pregnant women in the room during the scan, but my OB said it should be fine-MRI isn't the same as x-ray. I'll be in my 2nd trimester for his next one, and hopefully not showing too much so I can get away with staying with him. I'm making an informed choice and I'd never forgive myself if something went wrong with my toddler-in my mind there is more of a chance of complications with him than with the baby safely in my belly!

mamatoria |

Q&A: Are X-rays safe while pregnant?

It should be fine as long as you tell the x-ray tech that you are pregnant and they will give a sitto put over your belly to keep from harming the baby. I know this because I had to have one when I was pregnant with my first child and the x-ray was taken of my lungs and my son is perfect and above average in everything. (not that x-rays can improve a child)

hunt23 |

Q&A: Are X-rays safe while pregnant?

Thanks for the info! I had x-rays the day before I found out I was pregnant and was panicking that I had done something horrible.

freregan |

Q&A: Are X-rays safe while pregnant?

Thank you for all of the info - this is such a relief! I took a pregnancy test 24 hours before my podiatrist appointment. The pregnancy test came back negative so I went ahead with 4 x-rays. A few days later, I took another PT and to my surprise (and a little horror), it was positive. I took 3 more just to be sure and all were positive. I'm already high risk so I've been panicked that I might m/c again or if it survives, it'll have 3 heads and webbed feet. Thanks for relieving some stress.

ginger425 |

Q&A: Are X-rays safe while pregnant?

I have more of a question... new to the site - but I recently broke my tooth, as in yesterday. I have to go to the dentist, I was wondering, if novacane was safe while pregnant? And if the broken tooth needs replacing, is it safe to be knocked out? I'm TTC and I won't know for sure if I'm pregnant for another week or so? But I want to be safe.

InLove621 |

Q&A: Are X-rays safe while pregnant?

I am 34 weeks with a wrist injury!!! Is an MRI safe????

Queina |

Q&A: Are X-rays safe while pregnant?

I had to get an xray during the beginning of my second trimester to confirm I had pneumonia. Sometimes it is riskier not to get the xray than to get one because your baby needs you healthy. I just informed the radiology tech that I was pregnant and he made sure to place a lead lined wrap over my uterus for each xray position.

jkstratton |

Q&A: Are X-rays safe while pregnant?

I work in a trauma unit where we are doing x-rays all of the time. We are mostly all women, and at least one of us is usually pregnant. We wear lead jackets to protect ourselves and I've seen pregnant women work like this right up to their due dates and can't think of one person that has ever had a problem with their baby because of it.

jenrn1 |

Q&A: Are X-rays safe while pregnant?

X-Rays can be very harmful while you're pregnant, that is why I don't recommend them. I'm working at a teleradiology center and we advise all the pregnant women to wait until they give birth.

deanjohnson |

are-x-rays-safe-while-pregnant

Hi everyone I just found out I'm pregnant with my second child :-) very happy about this. Thing is a couple of weeks ago I had 3 dental X-rays. At the time I must have only been a week pregnant, Im just worried now that I may have caused harm. A lead apron wasn't used. Has anyone any advice for me? Xxx

Dysartst06 |

Q&A: Are X-rays safe while pregnant?

I had a positive PPD (TB skin test) 3 years ago and took the full prophylactic course of INH. I have always had clean chest X-rays, but my OB wanted me to get one now, just to be sure. I haven't made the appointment yet because I am so freaked out...even though it was my OB who ordered the chest Xray! The best part...I'm a nurse (which is how I was exposed to TB in the first place) and I totally know better. But like most things with my pregnancy, all my medical knowledge goes out the window and I start freaking out about the weirdest things.

laurenmdrn16 |

Q&A: Are X-rays safe while pregnant?

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lionking44 |

Q&A: Are X-rays safe while pregnant?

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lionking44 |