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To the Editor:
—In fluoroscopy of abdominal viscera rendered opaque by being filled with bismuth or barium mixtures, commonly the patient is viewed while facing the examiner. By this procedure, in obese patients or individuals in whom fluid is present in the peritoneal sac, the shadows cast on the fluorescent screen, even when the source of the rays is a Coolidge tube, are often poorly delimited.I have found, from the examination of a considerable number of patients, that sharply outlined images of bismuth or barium filled abdominal viscera are obtained by having the subject face the tube, with his back to the fluorescent screen. This position brings nearer to the screen the stomach, colon, gall-bladder, duodenum and the kidneys. It permits of palpation during the examination practically as readily as does the ordinary anteroposterior position. It has appeared to me that frequently the duodenum was better delimited by the
Smithies F. Position for Patients During Fluoroscopy. JAMA. 1915;LXIV(17):1442. doi:10.1001/jama.1915.02570430074027