20 doctors weighed in:

Is it safe to get x-rays while pregnant?

20 doctors weighed in
Dr. Pam Yoder
Obstetrics & Gynecology - Maternal Fetal Medicine
11 doctors agree

In brief: Depends on dosage

We cannot say x-rays are "safe".
However, we can say that it is appropriate for physicians or providers to order one with a shield if the benefit of the information outweighs the risk. (the risk/benefit must be considered before giving medications to pregnant women also.) it is better if ultrasound or MRI can be substituted for a single plain x-ray; fluoroscopy should be avoided. Ask about dosage.

In brief: Depends on dosage

We cannot say x-rays are "safe".
However, we can say that it is appropriate for physicians or providers to order one with a shield if the benefit of the information outweighs the risk. (the risk/benefit must be considered before giving medications to pregnant women also.) it is better if ultrasound or MRI can be substituted for a single plain x-ray; fluoroscopy should be avoided. Ask about dosage.
Dr. Pam Yoder
Dr. Pam Yoder
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1 comment
Dr. Barry Rosen
The timing of the X-ray is also very important, ideally avoided early in pregnancy when organ development is taking place.
Dr. Scott Kramer
Gynecology
2 doctors agree

In brief: Yes

Most x-rays do not pose a risk to your developing baby (eg.
Dental). The dose would have to be high and also directly to your abdomen. Ct scan if limited is ok. Lead shielding aprons are effective protection too. Mri and ultrasound don't have radiation so are safe.

In brief: Yes

Most x-rays do not pose a risk to your developing baby (eg.
Dental). The dose would have to be high and also directly to your abdomen. Ct scan if limited is ok. Lead shielding aprons are effective protection too. Mri and ultrasound don't have radiation so are safe.
Dr. Scott Kramer
Dr. Scott Kramer
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1 doctor agrees

In brief: Yes

For the most part, yes.
It takes a great deal of radiation to influence the outcome of a pregnancy. We do not see measurable changes in short or long term outcomes until total radiation exposure is 5 rads, which is about 5000 chest xrays. Dental xrays are not dangerous in pregnancy. If you need xrays in pregnancy, discuss why they are needed and how much radiation is involved with your doctor.

In brief: Yes

For the most part, yes.
It takes a great deal of radiation to influence the outcome of a pregnancy. We do not see measurable changes in short or long term outcomes until total radiation exposure is 5 rads, which is about 5000 chest xrays. Dental xrays are not dangerous in pregnancy. If you need xrays in pregnancy, discuss why they are needed and how much radiation is involved with your doctor.
Dr. Nicholas Fogelson
Dr. Nicholas Fogelson
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Dr. Ruth Crystal
Obstetrics & Gynecology

In brief: Yes

I agree w/dr. Fogelson's answer. Xrays are generally safe.
However, tell the xray tech that you are pregnant and ask for abdominal shielding if possible. Sometimes, MRI scans can be done instead of ct scans. Mri scans do not have radiation. Ultrasound is also safe in pregnancy.

In brief: Yes

I agree w/dr. Fogelson's answer. Xrays are generally safe.
However, tell the xray tech that you are pregnant and ask for abdominal shielding if possible. Sometimes, MRI scans can be done instead of ct scans. Mri scans do not have radiation. Ultrasound is also safe in pregnancy.
Dr. Ruth Crystal
Dr. Ruth Crystal
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Dr. Claire Serrato
Gynecology

In brief: No

We try to avoid xrays in pregnancy but if they are dental and you are shielded and after the first trimester, they are likely ok if the dentist is following proper safety equipment.
Other types of xrays are discouraged unless meant for the life of the mother.

In brief: No

We try to avoid xrays in pregnancy but if they are dental and you are shielded and after the first trimester, they are likely ok if the dentist is following proper safety equipment.
Other types of xrays are discouraged unless meant for the life of the mother.
Dr. Claire Serrato
Dr. Claire Serrato
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Dr. Padmavati Garvey
Obstetrics & Gynecology

In brief: Yes

If absolutely necessary you can get xrays while pregnant.
They will shield your abdomen and the baby.

In brief: Yes

If absolutely necessary you can get xrays while pregnant.
They will shield your abdomen and the baby.
Dr. Padmavati Garvey
Dr. Padmavati Garvey
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Dr. Erin Alward
Obstetrics & Gynecology

In brief: Yes

Undergoing a single diagnostic imaging study does not have enough radiation exposure to threaten the well being of a developing baby.
Multiple studies, however, could have some harmful effect if the accumulative radiation dose gets high enough. There are different levels or radiation exposure based on the study. Regular x-rays are very ow in radiation, where CT scans are higher.

In brief: Yes

Undergoing a single diagnostic imaging study does not have enough radiation exposure to threaten the well being of a developing baby.
Multiple studies, however, could have some harmful effect if the accumulative radiation dose gets high enough. There are different levels or radiation exposure based on the study. Regular x-rays are very ow in radiation, where CT scans are higher.
Dr. Erin Alward
Dr. Erin Alward
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