Lecture7 Dental x-ray film processing


The exam material: from chapter 1 to chapter 9.The reference for the exam is your text book. Everyone should seat on his/her seat number. The Dr said that the exam will be “easy” but study well. The Dr covered chapter 8 indirectly in the first lecture, so this lecture is from chapter 9 (Dental X-ray film processing).

After exposure we have to process the film in order to see image, film processing has a series of steps that collectively convert a latent image into a permanent visible image. Actually, we do not always need to do processing, because we have digital units which don’t need film processing, for this reason nowadays in many universities they stop giving this lecture, because we are in era of digital image, no need for processing. However, because you are going to do processing, you have to learn about it. So latent image is better/or pattern (not sure) form of emulsion that can’t be seen or detected, only seen after chemical processing of the film; processing means developing and fixing. This is the latent image, after it becomes a visible image.(I don’t know what is the pic!). Formation How operating image will be formed? You know the emulsion contains silver halide crystals; bromide and iodide, it depends on the type of the film, if it’s F speed or D speed. Silver crystals will absorb the x-ray, x-rays are high energy photons, so it’ll ionize silver bromine crystals (or iodine), and the atoms are separated so now we have ions, silver atoms will aggregate in irregularities of the crystals called “sensitivity space” .So this is a kind of store energy.

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To process the film we have to follow five steps mainly if it’s a manual processing: 1. Development. 2. Rinsing. 3. Fixing. 4. Washing. 5. Drying. What we do here (I think it’s the clinic) is automatic processing not manual processing and you have to differentiate between these two types.

Latent image formation:
If it’s a soft tissue mostly all of the X-ray will penetrate and expose the crystals, if it is bone few x-rays penetrate, if it’s amalgam or gold maybe nothing. During developing centers converted into black metallic silver, this conversion is called “reduction” , this is the first thing will happen during film processing. The soft tissue will become black, the centers in the bone also, amalgam that are no centers, later on the color of the silver will be converted to black with processing, you keep processing your image will become darker. Finally, when you put the film in fixer, unexposed crystals will be removed from the film, we remove unexposed crystals because we don’t want them to be affected during the processing. This is the reason why we have radiolucent images and radiopaque images

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Film processing steps
1. Developing Purpose: is to reduce the exposed silver halide crystals chemically into black metallic silver. You can see partial development, complete and overdevelopment. If you forget your film in the developer it will become darker. The developer solution softens the film emulsion during this process Main Factors: • Duration • Temperature of solution. • Concentration of solution. The temperature and concentration of solution may differ and this will affect the duration of developing, so people increase temperature of solution if they increase the concentration so the process will be faster, and this is how we can increase the speed of developing.

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Usually we prefer 20° for developing for 5 minutes and 10 minutes in fixation. Table 9-1 This table shows the components of the developing solutions; note that quinine builds up Lactones, Elon builds up frictones. • Oxidation of solution will result in deterioration of the developing solution.

2. Rinsing
After development we have to rinse the film to remove the developer from the film and to stop the development process. This step takes usually from 20 to 30 seconds.

3. Fixation
After rinsing,

Purpose: is to remove the unexposed, unenergized silver halide crystals from
the film by using a chemical solution known as the Fixer, the fixer hardens the film emulsion during this process. Component of fixer solution: <table 9-2>the main component of fixing solution is hypo-sodium thiosulfate.

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4. Washing
After fixation a water bath is used to wash the film for around 20 minutes. If the temperature we follow during processing is 68 F (20 c)we wash the film around 20 min.

5. Drying
After washing, there are many ways for drying the film ;films may be airdried at room temperature in a dust-free area or placed in a heated drying cabinet at temperature which is not exceed 120 F, or by using fans.

Film Processing Solutions forms 1. Powder, must be mixed with distilled water. 2. Ready to use liquid, no need to prepare it. 3. Liquid concentrate, must be mixed with distilled water.

Chemical solutions should be changed every 3 to 4 weeks depending on number of films process but it’s usually takes around 1 month, solutions have become depleted with time and use by physical removal and evaporation. Removing, oxidation, evaporation, all of these will lead to depletion and we have to change or to replenish the solutions. Replenishing is done daily by using highly concentrated solutions, while changing is done monthly.

Homework: how often do we change the fixer solution? Does it depend on the number of films processed?

The fixer may be affected by dilution because there is rinsing before fixation, so replenishing by using few drops of super concentrated solution.

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So manual maybe consider as the old methods, we have visual and fixed time temperature way.

This is the manual, we put our hands in the box, which prevent the light, and we have usually developer, water, fixer and water. Develop > 5 minutes at 68 degrees Rinse > 30 seconds (agitate continuously) Fix > 4 minutes (Agitate intermittently; 5 seconds every 30 seconds) Wash > 10 minutes in clean running water Hang films to dry . Q: Is it necessary to work inside a darkroom? No, it’s not. We have the day-light loader boxes, by this there is no need to be inside the darkroom, and otherwise it has to be inside the darkroom.

Look here at the picture, this window glass allowed only the safelight to go to the films.

Processing Tank
A container divided into compartments to hold the developer solution, water bath and fixer solution. We use processing tank for manual processing, instead of using cups we use the tank; it’s cheap.

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In this figure processing tank showing developing and fixing tank inserts in bath of running water with overflow drain. -The insert tank: two removable tanks filled with water, both are placed in the master tank, the developer solution is placed in the insert tank on the left and the fixer solution is placed in the insert tank on the right. -The master tank: suspends both insert tanks and filled with water. -The overflow pipe: used to control the level in the master tank.

The typical tank is made of stainless steel, the master and insert tanks must be cleaned each time the solutions are changed, by using a commercial stainless steel tank cleaner or a solution of hydrochloric acid and water. The temperature of the developer and fixer solution are controlled by the temperature of the circulating water in the master tank.

Manual processing
• Place hanger with films attached into the developer for 5 minutes. The lid is placed over the tank if you plan to leave the darkroom during development. • The silver halide crystals on the film are converted to black metallic silver in the developer. (after developing the film will convert from green color to black or gray and image begins to form).

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• After removing the lid, place the films in the rinse water and continuously agitate for 30 seconds. Next put the films in the fixer for 4 minutes and agitate for 5 seconds every 30 seconds. (Purpose of agitation is to get rid of air bubbles inside the solution, and to make an equal distribution of solution around the film.) • Remove the films from the fixer and place in the water bath for 10 minutes (double the time of developing). • Remove film from the wash water and hang films to dry. (Washing for 20 minutes while rinsing for 20 seconds).

Necessary for manual processing, we put it inside the developer to determine the temperature of it.

Manually we have two methods: 1. Visual method, it means when you inspect your film after putting it in the developer solutions, rinsing it and fix it. So it’s not a standard guide, it depends on human factor and should be limited to cases where special density of the final image are required. It depends on human eye. 2. Fixed time temperature method; so when we increase the temperature we decrease the time, it depends on manufacturer chart. The chart is reliable and standardized.

This is the daylight loader automatic processing which we are using in our clinic, as you can see the component: 1. The processing housing 2. The film feed slot

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3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.

The roller film transporter The developer compartment The fixer compartment The water compartment The drying chamber A replenisher pump and replenisher solutions The film recovery slot.

Automatic processing
-The The film is transported directly from the developer solution into the fixer without a rinsing step. 4-5 -The major advantage of this process is the time saved, it requires only from 4 minutes. -we we have a daylight loader also.

Homework: why there is no rinse step step? -Automatic Automatic processing is often preferred over manual processing for the following reasons: I. Less processing time is required. II. Time and temperatures are automatically controlled.

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III. Less equipment. IV. Less space is required. Also there are more standardized results, elimination of rinsing, higher temperature of solutions and higher concentration of solutions .however, this will result in deterioration of solutions, replenishing of solutions.

This advantage is more expensive, much regular maintenance, requires proceed a minimal number of films per day, so there is a certain extent of the films we must process them. Higher temperatures will lead to deterioration and also lead to chemical foggy of radiographs, foggy can be due to a high temperature of the developer solution. -Foggy (‫)ضبابي‬, it has many causes: fig 9-31 1-Not safelight and light leaks in the darkroom. 2- Chemicals and radiation. 3- Outdated films. -Solutions for any other automatic processes are different should not be used interchangeably. A homework question: Why can’t we use manual processor solutions for automatic processor?

We rarely see it nowadays because we’ve stopped processing and if we want to process we do it under daylight loader .However, in the past we had darkrooms for processing the films. Location of the darkroom It must be near the area of x-ray unit, convenient, it must be large enough to accommodate film processing equipment and to allow ample working space, the size of the darkroom is determined by these factors:

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1. Volume of radiographs processes. 2. Number of people using the room. 3. The type of processing equipment, either processing tanks or automatic processor. 4. Space required for duplication of films and storage.

Also it must be light-tight no light leaks should be observed, When the door is closed no white light should be seen. -Light leaks: any white light that leaks into the darkroom. We need 2 types of light in the room and it depends on whether you want to use the light during processing, or if you want to clean the room itself. We shouldn’t use florescent light because it will affect the films.

Two types of lightings are essential in a darkroom: 1. Room lighting, if you want to clean the room you need overhead white light, also we use it for mixing chemicals. 2. Safe lighting, if you want to process films inside the darkroom because it’s dark you can’t see anything, you need light to provide illumination in the dark room and it’s called safelight. -A safelight consists of a lamp equipped with a low-wattage bulb (71/2 or 15 watt) and a safelight filter. -A safelight filter removes the short wavelengths in the blue-green portion of the visible light spectrum and at the same time it permits the passage of light in redorange range. - We have two types of filters, GBX-2 filter and *38:05* GBX-2 use for all films in 15 wattage ** for intra oral films only, orange filter, 10 wattage bulb. - if Films that are unwrapped too close to the safelight or exposed to it more than 2

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to 3 minutes appear fogged, so a safelight must be placed a minimum of 4 feet (1.2 m) away from the film.

-Extra oral films are more sensitive than intra oral films. < fig 9-4>

Q: How to know that your safelight is safe? Coin test!! First of all you have to turn off the lights in the darkroom so unwrapped unexposed film and place it on a flat surface at least 4 feet, the coin is on the top of the film, leave it for 2-3 minutes this is to be sure that your safelight is safe. And if your safelight is not safe, exposure will happen and all areas except the area of the coin will be affected (become gray), it will become gray when you process the film. If your safe light is safe all of the film will be clear. Ventilation If we need good ventilation we use air condition or electric fan, ideal temperature is 70°F, if the temperature is more than 30°C it may cause fogged film. Humidity The humidity level should be maintained between 50% and 70%, if it becomes too high, the film emulsion doesn’t dry, when it’s too low static electricity becomes a problem and causes film artifacts. The darkroom work space It must include an adequate counter area where films can be unwrapped before processing. It also should be cleaned and dry. The darkroom storage space It must include ample room for chemical processing solutions, film cassettes and other miscellaneous radiographic supplies. Boxes of opened extra oral film must be stored in the darkroom. It should be light-

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tight. Unopened boxes should not be stored in dark room. Homework: why Unopened boxes should not be stored in dark room.

Other requirements Film Hangers, drying operators,

Processing errors We see errors while using manual processing but we may not see them in automatic processing.

1- Undeveloped film 2- Overdeveloped film, too much developing time 3- Reticulation of emulsion, leads to sudden changes in temperature, for example the developer is too hot and the fixer is too cold so this will lead to reticulation. 4- Developer spots, dark black spots. 5- Fixer spots, white and usually large. 6- Yellow-brown satins, caused due to insufficient fixation time, insufficient rinsing and using of exhausted developer or fixer. 7- Developer cutoff. 8- Fixer cutoff. 9- Overlapped films, if you put two films inside automatic processor for example without waiting for 15-20 sec. it are a common mistake done by students. 10Air bubbles. 11Fingernail artifact, this is seen when the film emulsion is damaged by the operator’s fingernails during rough handling of the films and it will lead to ionize the silver atoms .and it’s a common mistake. 12Fingerprint artifact.

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13Static electricity electricity. 14Scratched film, ilm, if you handle the film roughly you will scratch the film. 15Light leak, happened happened due to accidently exposure of film to the light. It depends on the area which is exposed to the light. 16Fogged leak, it results from: improper safelighting, light leaks in darkroom, outdated films, improper film storage, contaminated solutions and if the e developer solution is too hot. : what’s the difference between air bubbles and water droplets in homework: films?

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Note: To get more details about problems and errors of processing from the book, you can find them in these figures: 9 9-4 , 9-5 , 9-6 , 9-7 7 … pages 117 and 118.

mistake. Best wishes to all of you ☺ , and sorry for any mistake Sawsan an Jwaied thanks for the help <3 done by: Eman Idkaidek.

Corrected by Sawsan Jwaied

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