Radiology scans are commonly used to help diagnose and manage patients’ symptoms and conditions. They include a range of different imaging techniques e.g. X-rays, Ultrasound, CT scans, and MRI scans, which the radiographer helps to acquire the images of the insides of your body. These images are then processed and sent to the specialist radiologist to analyse and then report on the scan results to send back to your referring doctor.
(1) You Are Not Alone
Fear of undergoing radiology testing is quite common so if you’re anxious about your scan, the first thing to say is you are not alone.
However, there really is nothing to fear. Most scans tend to be quick and relatively pain-free depending on your symptoms. Even if the radiographer leaves the room during an X-ray, you will be able to talk to them at all times and they will be able to see you.
Radiographers are quite used to people feeling anxious during a scan and will do their best to put you at your ease about the procedure so don’t be afraid to ask questions or to tell them how you are feeling.
(2) Face Your Fears
Depending on what you fear about your radiology exam, depends on how best to prepare. As with most things, talking to your radiologist in advance is usually the most effective way to put your mind at rest.
Some people are worried about feeling claustrophobic during an MRI scan. Often a conversation can be enough to reassure you but if you are still concerned, or find a conventional MRI scanner too difficult to undertake, alternative options are available like using an open, upright MR scanner to help overcome the fear.
Fear of needles
Other people are fearful of having an injection. If this is a problem for you we can discuss some techniques that could help you to overcome your fear of needles.
There are other simple techniques besides these to help you face your fears, so be sure to contact the radiology department at least a week beforehand to discuss any concerns.
(3) Understanding The Procedure
Another way of overcoming your fear is to ensure that you are really well-informed about the procedure you are having before you attend for your appointment.
You will normally receive some information alongside your appointment letter but you can also look online to see what the procedure entails.
Patient reviews and testimonials are also a great way to see the experience of other people.
(4) Waiting For Results
The wait for test results can be an anxious one for many people and, as radiologists we understand that. We will always endeavour to get your results to you quickly, although accuracy is crucial so we make sure that our analysis is thorough and detailed.
Your doctor or consultant will discuss what your results mean and will recommend a course of possible treatment with the aim of getting you back to your normal routine as quickly and effectively as possible.
We are always happy to provide information and support about any diagnostic test you are undergoing and talk to you about your particular circumstances and how we can ensure you have the best possible experience while in our care.