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The fluoroscopy suite uses live X-ray pictures to aid the practitioner performing certain procedures. These commonly include lumbar punctures, myelograms and video fluoroscopy swallows.


What is a myelogram?

  • A lumbar puncture is performed under x-ray guidance
  • Once the needle is in position, X-ray dye (Omnipaque 300) is injected into the spinal fluid
  • X-ray pictures, followed by a CT scan, are used to look at the spine

How is it done?

  • Usually you will be admitted to a day ward
  • You will be lying on your left side, on an X-ray table
  • Using X-rays, a fine needle is placed in your lower back
  • A small sample of spinal fluid is taken for testing and a small amount of X-ray dye is injected into the spinal fluid
  • You will then be asked to turn over in various directions
  • This is to help move the dye around the curves of your spine
  • X-ray pictures will be taken with you in various positions
  • Finally, you will be transferred to have a CT scan.

How long does it take?

The procedure takes approximately 20-30 minutes.

What are the risks?

Half the people who have a myelogram get a headache afterwards, which can last a few days. Drinking plenty of fluids, and taking painkillers or drinks containing caffeine can help (tea, coffee, cola, etc.). Some people find their symptoms get worse for a few days. However, this should be temporary.

Fluoroscopy Consultants

Dr Sacha Niven

Dr Sacha Niven has been a Consultant Neuroradiologist at The Walton Centre since April 2003. He is also an Honorary Lecturer at The University of Liverpool.

Page last updated: 23 June 2021