Chest Radiology > Technique > Technically Adequate > Inspiration

Technically adequate


The patient should be examined in full inspiration. This greatly helps the radiologist to determine if there are intrapulmonary abnormalities. The diaphragm should be found at about the level of the 8th - 10th posterior rib or 5th - 6th anterior rib on good inspiration.


A patient can appear to have a very abnormal chest if the radiograph is taken during expiration. Look at the case below - on the first image, the loss of the right heart border silhouette would lead you to the diagnosis of a possible pneumonia. However, the patient had taken a poor inspiration. On repeat exam with improved inspiration, the right heart border is normal.



© Copyright Rector and Visitors of the University of Virginia 2021