Section III. DIAGNOSTIC PROCEDURES
2-17. SKULL X-RAYS
a. Skull X-rays are the oldest, non-invasive neurological test used to evaluate
the bones, which make up the skull. Because of complex anatomy of the skull, a series
of films is usually required for a complete evaluation.
b. Diagnostic uses for skull X-rays:
To detect fractures in patient's with head trauma.
(2) To help detect and assess increased intracranial pressure, tumors,
To aid diagnosis of pituitary tumors.
To detect congenital anomalies.
c. Nursing implications.
(1) Review the patient's clinical record to determine the reason (purpose) for
the specific scheduled skull x-rays.
Approach and identify the patient.
(3) Interview the patient to determine his/her knowledge of the purpose of
the skull x-rays.
(4) As indicated, explain to the patient the specific purpose of the skull
x-rays in his/her situation. Explain purpose in a manner consistent with that offered by
the physician to avoid confusing the patient.
Explain to the patient the events which will occur prior to the skull x-rays.
Patient is not required to restrict food and fluids before x-rays.
(b) All jewelry and other metal objects must be removed from patient's
head and neck and placed in safekeeping.
Tell the patient where and when the x-rays will be performed.