What Does an X-ray Technician Do? - Video

An X-ray Technician works in a health care setting, creating images of the human body. These images help other health care providers make diagnosis or recommend treatment. An X-ray Technician may also be called a radiologic technologist or radiographer.

Job Description

X-ray Technicians, also called radiologic technologists or radiographers, use machines to produce medical images of a patient's body. These images give other health care professionals information to help diagnose or prescribe treatment for a patient. Training for this profession ranges between one and four years, with most training programs offered through hospital programs or universities. While in training, technicians can choose to specialize in a certain type of radiologic technology, such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), computer tomography (CT) or mammography.

Daily Duties

The main duty of a Technician is to take x-rays of a specific area of a patient's body. They also work with patients to explain the procedure, position them correctly, and remove any items through which x-rays can not pass. It is a technician's responsibility to make sure the surrounding area is covered by lead shields and other such materials in order to limit the amount of radiation exposure. X-ray Technicians also operate and maintain radiography equipment. Experienced technicians may even perform advanced imaging procedures, such as fluoroscopies which provide movie-like images of internal stuctures.

Work Setting

Most X-ray Technicians work in hospitals, clinics, diagnostic imaging centers, nursing homes, laboratories or the private industry. These professionals should be in good physical condition as they work on their feet for much of the day. They may also need to move patients who are disabled or havedifficulty moving on their own. X-ray Technicians use special equipment such as lead aprons and gloves in order to minimize the amount of radiation they get exposed to on the job. They also use instruments to monitor radiation exposure. Most X-ray Technicians work 40 hours per week with occasional weekend, evening or on-call hours.

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