X-ray equipment takes images of our internal organs, bones and muscles through a form of radiation. The machine will shoot a burst of radiation rays into the body part that needs examining, and like a camera it records the image on an X-ray film. Digital machines record the image on a special plate.
X-rays are absorbed in varying degrees by different parts of the body. Body organs, muscles and fat allow most of the radiation to pass through so they appear in varying shades of gray. Bones absorb more of the radiation thereby making their image appear white on film. Air looks black in an X-ray film.
If you are tasked to buy the X-ray machine for your medical office, here are some tips.
- Determine what type of X-ray machine the medical office needs. X-ray machines come in different sizes and configuration and also for specific functions. There are chest X-ray machines, one that is used for chiropractic imaging, some for skull and abdominal imaging, The machine can be a large one for use in a hospital, a portable one for mobile x-ray clinics or small ones that can be used by clinics and small medical facilities.
- Determine the intended use, the location and who will operate the equipment. The operator may be required to use dosimeters or radiation film badges. Some X-ray equipment has built-in safety features to deactivate the X-ray machine.
- Contact the selected vendors and request for a presentation. They should present the machine in detail and explain all the functions of the X-ray unit, the safety precautions and features, operator training they will provide, maintenance and technical help, repair and other after-sales services. There should be an evaluation period of maybe six months. Check with the vendor what their policies on these are.
- Ask for references. If the vendor is reputable and the machines they distribute are top quality, they should be able to provide you with references from facilities and practitioners who are using their equipment.
- Shop around first to compare prices and consult others who have their own X-ray unit and ask for recommendations aside from the ones that you already have. Buying an X-ray machine is a very large investment and you should check the business and medical angles that will definitely affect your final decision.
- Ask if the unit vendor also supplies the radiographic accessories, the films and safety gear needed in the efficient and safe operation of the X-ray unit.
- Check the multiple functionality of the unit. Current models of X-ray machines are multi-purpose units suitable for general use. It might be more economical for you in the long run to get one of these types. It also depends on the size of the medical facility, your requirement and your budget. Some machines are combination units with an upright assembly for chest X-rays, with a floating and adjustable table for lateral imaging and more. One example of this type of unit is the Optima Multi-RAD machine distributed by MedLink Imaging.
Due to the high financial requirement to invest in an X-ray machine, you need to do a lot of research and have a review and evaluation process in place before you make the final decision. Select reputable distributors that have years of experience in the business and offers the best deal and exemplary before and after sales service.