No one wants to spend time in urgent care but sometimes an x-ray or physical examination is unavoidable.
The global x-ray market is expected to surpass $14.5 billion by 2025. X-rays are a quick and effective way to receive a medical diagnosis. But it can be hard to determine if you need an emergency x-ray.
No one wants to waste time in a waiting room or waste medical resources. But how do you know if it’s time to take a trip to the emergency room? Are there signs and symptoms to pay attention to?
In this article, we will share 5 signs that you should get an emergency x-ray. If you are experiencing any of these indications, it might be time to see a doctor.
What Is An X-Ray?
First, let’s take a closer look at emergency x-rays.
X-rays are a form of imaging used by doctors to work toward a diagnosis. Doctors use x-rays to further examine areas of the body that are not easily visible.
These exams are minimally invasive and pain-free. They are quick and effective.
X-rays use electromagnetic technology to capture black-and-white images. If necessary, doctors may provide protective gear or aprons to reduce exposure to electromagnetic waves. It is otherwise a simple procedure.
1. Joint Immobility
Sudden changes in mobility may indicate a serious problem. If you’re experiencing trouble moving a joint, it might mean you need an x-ray.
Even a stiff joint may indicate an underlying health issue.
Difficulty moving a joint can be an indication of a larger condition such as arthritis, or a buildup of fluid. It may also confirm a dislocated joint.
An x-ray will reveal whether or not these problems are present so they can be properly diagnosed and treated.
2. Trouble Breathing
Breathing is something many of us take for granted, or rarely consider. But if you are suddenly experiencing trouble breathing, it can be alarming.
Trouble breathing is worthy of a trip to emergency services or a walk-in center. It could be an indication of a serious medical problem or an ailment that requires medical attention to improve.
An x-ray can detect a variety of ailments including chronic lung issues, emphysema, broken ribs, a collapsed lung, or heart issues. X-rays will also detect fluid or air around the lungs, and help diagnose pneumonia.
If you are experiencing breathing issues, especially with the presence of chest pain or a chest injury, it is important to seek medical services. Trouble breathing may also indicate changes to your cardiovascular health.
In extreme cases when a patient experiences trouble breathing, x-rays will detect the early stages of cancer.
3. Difficulty Walking
Anytime walking creates sudden discomfort or pain, or anytime there’s an inability to walk, patients should be seen by a health care professional. Trouble walking could indicate a sprain or break.
Whether you’ve endured a sports injury, slipped on ice, or simply rolled over your ankle, it might be time for an emergency x-ray. If you are experiencing pain or struggling to move a limb, it is important to rule out a break.
An x-ray cannot detect a sprain, but it will help doctors eliminate the possibility of a fracture or break. X-rays will determine if you have broken an ankle or foot.
By ruling out a break, doctors may also be able to better diagnose a sprain, soft tissue injury, or inflammation.
4. Persistent Swelling
It’s not unusual to have some swelling after an injury. But a larger issue may be at play if the swelling doesn’t improve or disappear after several days. Persistent swelling should be examined by a walk-in clinic.
Although it’s widely believed that swelling reduces the effectiveness of x-rays, that is false. X-ray technicians are still able to see the bone, regardless of the amount of swelling that’s present.
Swelling may be a sign of several ailments. It may indicate changes to soft tissue, internal inflammation, or fluid gathered around a joint. It may also reveal a bone fracture.
If you are experiencing swelling that won’t go away, don’t delay a visit to urgent care. Delaying medical attention may make the condition far worse.
An X-Ray Reveals a Lot
If you’re experiencing any of these 4 signs or symptoms listed above, it might be time to seek an x-ray. An x-ray can help doctors eliminate potential causes and work toward a proper diagnosis. It’s also important to rule out a fracture or seek medical treatment when you need it.
If you’re looking for an urgent care clinic in Georgia, we can help. Visit one of our 8 locations today and let us help.