and magnetic fields as were the cathode rays that he was studying. Because he did not
know the nature of these rays, he called them x-rays. Others have sometimes called
them roentgen rays.
c. Modern medical science has profited greatly as a result of this important
discovery. X-rays are utilized by the medical profession to diagnose illnesses, study
bone fractures, locate foreign substances in the body, and treat cancer and skin
Radiology is that branch of medical science dealing with the use of radiant
energy in the diagnosis and treatment of disease. A radiologist is a physician who has
special training and experience in radiology. In the Army, the principal duties of the
radiologist are to conduct, interpret, and supervise x-ray and fluoroscopic examinations
and to perform radiation therapy, which may include the use of x-ray, radium, and
radioisotopes. Fluoroscopy is an examination conducted by observing the fluorescence
of a screen caused by x-rays transmitted through an object.
THE ENLISTED X-RAY SPECIALIST
a. The x-ray specialist must have a comprehensive understanding of all the
technical factors involved in operating x-ray equipment and in producing high-quality
radiographs; he must have a good working knowledge of the characteristics,
capabilities, and limitations of the equipment and accessories available to him; he must
know how to operate the x-ray machines to obtain the best results possible, observing
all safety rules.
b. The x-ray specialist must become proficient in the technical, clerical, and
teaching areas of his duties and functions. In addition, he must be thoroughly familiar
with the operational programs of his department. This will enable him to work effectively
under different conditions, to substitute for others, and to cope with emergencies.
c. The continual introduction of new radiographic techniques that result in better
diagnosis and treatment for the patient further requires the x-ray specialist to assume
new responsibilities. The well-trained specialist is able to transfer learning derived from
past experiences to new situations.
Section II. BASIC CONCEPTS OF MATTER AND ENERGY
Certain fundamental concepts regarding matter and energy are required as a
basis for an intelligent use of various types of radiation in diagnosis and therapy.
Knowledge of the functional relationships between matter and energy helps one to
understand how x-rays and other forms of radiation are produced, how they behave,
and how they affect the human body.