Why do I need a Physician's order for an X-ray or other Imaging Services exam?

X-ray exams use ionizing radiation that can damage cells in large doses. Modern X-ray equipment is much lower dose than it was years ago, but a qualified physician should still evaluate the risk versus the gain of the exam ordered.

Why can't I eat or drink anything prior to my x-ray or imaging procedure?

The plain film exams we do never require the patient to be NPO.

How long does the x-ray exam or procedure take?

It can vary based on the exam and views ordered as well as the patients ability to cooperate, but a good rough estimate is generally 10-30 minutes.

How much risk is associated with having a routine x-ray exam?

Plain film x-rays are very low dose, for example a chest x-ray is about 0.02 mSv (millisieverts). We are all exposed to ionizing radiation everyday. On average Americans receive a radiation dose of 6.2 mSv each year. Half of this dose comes from natural background radiation. Most of the background radiation exposure comes from radon in the air, with smaller amounts from cosmic rays and the Earth itself. The other half comes form man made sources of radiation, including medical, commercial, and industrial sources. In general, a yearly dose of 6.2 mSv from all radiation sources has not been shown to cause humans any harm according to the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

What should you not do before an X-ray?

Put on jewelry or wear clothing that has zippers or rivets or other sources of metal. Metal will not interfere with the x-ray equipment itself as it will with MRI and CT, but metal does block the x-rays creating blind spots in the images where the metal overlaps the anatomy.

What can I expect at my appointment?

A qualified Radiologic Technologist will guide you through the examination which can vary based on what was ordered and circumstances. In general the exams are painless and just require some proper positioning of the patient and then the patient remaining motionless while the exposure is happening, this can require the patient to hold their breath, but is not necessary for every exam.

Do I need appointment to have an x-ray?

Fastex does not schedule appointments as common practice. When you call for an exam we will give you a time estimate of how long it will take us to get to you based on the other exams and medical necessity (triage) of those exams. A typical response time for the lower valley is one hour or less.

How long will it take to get my results?

Routine exams results are typically back in two hours after the exam is completed, with STATs typically being back in 30 minutes.

How can I get a copy of my results?

Facilities are setup on our fax server and this allows for the results to be sent as soon as the radiologist finalizes the report making the turn around time much faster. If a facility needs an additional copy for any reason they can call us anytime and we will fax over another. If a patient is not in a facility, in home for example, results will be faxed to the ordering provider manually and that is same day.

How long do you retain my records?

X-ray images for adults are kept for 7 years and the paperwork is kept for 10 years.

Do I need authorization for test?

Insurance can be very complicated, but in general no we do not require prior authorization for any exams we do.

Can I have exam performed without insurance? Cash Discounts?

Yes, we will perform exams without insurance and we do offer cash pricing.

Should I worry about cost if I have insurance?

We understand that medical needs can be cost prohibitive and we are happy to work with anyone on pricing that will meet your needs and abilities.