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Doctor insights on: Barium X Ray Small Intestine

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My mom just had some x rays done of her esophagus and they told her that her small intestine is narrow. I want to know if this is something dangerous?

My mom just had some x rays done of her esophagus and they told her that her small intestine is narrow. I want to know if this is something dangerous?

Need more info: The info in the question is incomplete. An xray of the esophagus is usually an esophagogram where a patient drinks barium. Xray of the small intestine is an small bowel follow through. Did your mom had both studies? What symptoms were she having? ...Read more

Intestine (Definition)

The gastrointestinal tract starts at the mouth, travel down the tunnel (esophagus), which connects to the stomach, which then empties into the duodenum, jejunum, and ileum---the three parts of the small intestine (@25 feet). This empties into the colon or large intestine (about 5 feet), which then becomes the sigmoid colon, rectum and out the anus. So, every morsel eaten ...Read more


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What does it mean when my X-ray image of the intestines showed up white without barium swallow?

What does it mean when my X-ray image of the intestines showed up white without barium swallow?

It's hard to: speculate, based on very limited information. If what you are seeing is as 'white' as barium would be, you may have ingested something with radiopaque content, like Pepto-Bismol or Maalox. ...Read more

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Bowel perf. In June. chest X-ray elevated right diaphragm. Thought it was from free air in abdomen. Sniff test shows not improved. Any thoughts ?

 Bowel perf. In June. chest X-ray elevated right diaphragm. Thought it was from free air in abdomen. Sniff test shows not improved. Any thoughts ?

Diaphragm paralysis?: Hi, how did u perforate the bowel? Trauma? if that so, possibly you have damaged either the Diaphragm or Phrenic nerve which innervates the Diaphragm, which might have caused paralysis of the Diaphragm. If you have shortness of breath especially when lying down, you might want to see a Thoracic surgeon for possible repair.
Good luck. ...Read more

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I recently had a barium xray preformed and they found a dark shadow in the middle of my intestines . What could it be?

I recently had a barium xray preformed and they found a  dark shadow in the middle of my intestines . What  could it be?

Wait and see.: Depends on the location. If in the large bowel this could be concerning for a colon cancer. If this was a small bowel spot then it is a little harder to guess what it might be. I suppose you are going to have further imaging or studies soon to confirm the finding. ...Read more

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Daughter 11 years old almost every night intestine area cramps xray revealed she is constipated ,barium test negative ,she is on laxative,worried ?

Daughter 11 years old almost every night intestine area cramps xray revealed she is constipated ,barium test negative ,she is on laxative,worried ?

Constipation: Constipation is treatable and so your daughter should be fine. Push water and add fruit such as peaches, pears, and prunes. This does not usually get better overnight and may require months of monitoring. Keep good follow up with the doctor treating her. ...Read more

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Doc. Found ulcer in terminal ileum, did biopsy, said biopsy shows inflammation..Now wants to do barium X-ray of small bowel. Why? What's he lookin 4?

Doc. Found ulcer in terminal ileum, did biopsy, said biopsy shows inflammation..Now wants to do barium X-ray of small bowel. Why? What's he lookin 4?

He's looking for...: Crohn's, behcet's, infection, nsaid-related injury, etc. The small bowel imaging (ct enterography, mr enterography, small bowel follow-through) can help determine what other parts of the intestine may be affected ; the extent of that disease (if present), as clues to the diagnosis. ...Read more

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What does it mean when a test of X-ray of small bowel?

What does it mean when a test of X-ray of small bowel?

Looking at intestine: A small bowel xray is one way that doctors can check to see it looks the way it should and can help decide if it working the way it should. Usually you are given something to drink (a thick substance called barium) that makes your intestines show up on the xray. Depending on how your intestine looks on the xray, it can help doctors find the problem. ...Read more

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What does it mean a a test is abnormal of a X-ray of small bowel?

What does it mean a a test is abnormal of a X-ray of small bowel?

Small bowel: A vague question gets a vague answer, consult your dr. ...Read more

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Hip X-ray has two small circular(ish) bright white in my lower abdomen. They are right next to each other a bit below belly button. What are they?

Hip X-ray has two small circular(ish) bright white in my lower abdomen. They are right next to each other a bit below belly button. What are they?

X-rays: What were you wearing when you had the X-ray done? When you describe two BRIGHT WHITE circular objects just below the navel the first thing I think of is snaps or buttons from your pants - something outside the body that was against your skin that wouldn't allow the X-ray beams to penetrate (causing the bright white appearance). ...Read more

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Will a barium test show all of the stool in the small and large intestines? Is it typical to have one performed weeks before the first colonoscopy?

No and no: Barium is a contrast agent which helps the visualization of the bowel during X-ray studies. When given as an enema, it helps for large bowel(colon) examination.Orally, it can help for small bowel evaluation. Neither route is useful for imaging BOTH large and small bowel.If the patient has taken proper bowel preparation measures, there is in fact no stool in the bowel to degrade the visualization. ...Read more

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Would having a normal looking esophagus, norm barium swallowing, norm MRE of small intestines, rule out esoph. motility disorders?

Need manometry: at this stage, you need high resolution manometry, probably best if done at academic medical center. ...Read more

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I was just wondering why does barium show up on an x-ray?

Becuase: Barium has a high atomic number - it's a very heavy element. Heavy elements absorb x-rays - hence you can see it. It's like any other heavy dense object, that you'd see on an x-ray. It's the same reason why xrays don't penetrate lead.....Though lead would be dangerous to ingest. ...Read more

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Has anybody had a X-ray barium swallow?

Has anybody had a X-ray barium swallow?

Yes: I am a radiologist. What is your exact question. There are different types looking for different things. There is a single and double contrast study. It evaluates swallowing the function of the esophagus and to determine if u have reflux or a hiatal hernia. It can also check for inflammation or ulcers or cancer. Be specific on ? ...Read more

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What is the difference between a colonoscopy and a barium enema X-ray?

What is the difference between a colonoscopy and a barium enema X-ray?

Imaging vs looking: A Barium Enema is performed by a radiologist by flowing contrast solution into the colon and then taking x-rays of the abdomen after the lining of the intestine has been coated.
Sigmoidoscopy or colonoscopy is performed by a gastroenterologist who uses a flexible scope and camera to look directly into the colon at the intestinal lining. ...Read more

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How long does a barium swallow X-ray take?

Minutes: Barium swallow evaluates the esophagus primarily, can take a few minutes. Can take longer to develop films and evaluate by the md
barium meal (upper GI series), swallow more barium, evaluates the esophagus, stomach, upper small bowel; takes about an hour.
Ugi small bowel follow through (ugisbft) looks at the esophagus, stomach and rest of small bowel-can take up to several hours. ...Read more

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What kinds of things can be detected by barium swallow X-ray test?

Many things: In some circles barium swallow includes just throat/pharynx. Sometimes includes pharynx and esophagus. Pharynx examination looks for dysmotility, oropharyngeal coordination, aspiration of barium into airway, and possible obstruction to movement of barium column. Evaluation of esophagus shows dysmotility, irritability from gastroesoph. reflux, stricture, infection, diverticulum etc. ...Read more

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An X-ray showed that my bowels are backed up in parts of my intestines. Should I see a Gastroenterologist?

An X-ray showed that my bowels are backed up in parts of my intestines. Should I see a Gastroenterologist?

Treat constipation: First try treatment for constipation, such as prune juice or senna tablets. Bowels backed up at age 61 can be sign of colon cancer. Have you had a normal colonoscopy before? Any family history of colon cancer. If the answers are yes/no, then OK to just try to work on constipation. May find good info at this site: http://www.mayoclinic.org/patient-care-and-health-information ...Read more

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What amount of of the small intestine can be removed safely?

What amount of of the small intestine can be removed safely?

Differs among people: Some people can lose a significant length of their intestine and still maintain relatively normal function. Other people can retain their entire intestine length and still have poor function. Historically, adults require about 100cm minimum to function without supplemental fluids or nutrition. However, this depends on presence of large intestine and the valve between the small and large intestine. ...Read more

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How much of the small intestine can be removed safely if damaged?

How much of the small intestine can be removed safely if damaged?

All but 150-200cm: All of the intestine can be removed. However, most adults need to keep at least 150 to 200 cms of small intestine to maintain enough function to avoid complications such as dehydration, severe diarrhea, and vitamin/mineral deficiencies. When you have less than that amount, you may require supplemental IV fluids of nutrition into the vein. Some patients receive intestine transplant, if necessary. ...Read more

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What does a 'boggy' small intestine mean? What could that be a condition of? Ty!

What does a 'boggy' small intestine mean? What could that be a condition of?  Ty!

Boggy: usually we call boggy as loose or flaccid, lacking tone - in regards to the smooth muscle of the small bowl. A common condition of this is an ileus, immotility. If this is occurring there maybe a problem with the enteric system of the gut. ...Read more

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After barium x-ray even if seen tumors are too big to be removed by colonoscopy, still colonoscopy will be done, am I right or maybe not?

After barium x-ray even if seen tumors are too big to be removed by colonoscopy, still colonoscopy will be done, am I right or maybe not?

Most likely: Unless xray findings unequivocally show that surgery is needed rather urgently, colonoscopy to get a tissue diagnosis would be recommended. In a case like this the attending physician would review the xrays with the radiologist and a surgeon and then determine the likely diagnosis and the next recommended step-diagnostic colonoscopy or colon surgery. ...Read more

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After barium x-ray even if seen tumors are too big to be removed by colonoscopy, still colonoscopy will be done, am I right or maybe not?

After barium x-ray even if seen tumors are too big to be removed by colonoscopy, still colonoscopy will be done, am I right or maybe not?

Yes: Dear MarkM, yes, a colonoscopy is still needed because doctors need a piece of tissue to determine what kind of tumor it is, which will then determine the treatment.
I hope this answers your question. ...Read more

Barium (Definition)

Barium is a chemical element with symbol ba and atomic number 56. It is the fifth element in group 2, a soft silvery metallic alkaline earth metal. Because of its high chemical reactivity barium is never found in nature as a free element. Its hydroxide was known in pre-modern history as baryta; this substance does not occur as a mineral, but can be prepared ...Read more


Dr. James Lin
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Small Intestine (Definition)

The small intestine is the intestinal tract that lies between the stomach and the colon. It is involved in digesting and absorbing most of the nutrients we need ...Read more