Film Artifacts

 An artifact is any irregularity on an image that is not caused by the normal shadowing of tissue by the primary beam.  There are three areas where artifacts occur:
 Exposure  Processing

 Handling

Exposure Artifacts
 Exposure artifacts are generally associated with how the examination was performed. Examples include:
 Incorrect screen film match or wrong film
 Poor screen contact  Warped cassettes  Dirty screens  Improper use of a grid.  Improper technical factors – most common reason for


Exposure Artifacts
 Improper preparation of the patient for the exam

or gowning instructions.  Double exposures  Motion blur from improper breathing instructions.  Improper positioning of the patient and equipment.

breathing  Poor screen contact  Obscured detail .Common exposure artifacts  Appearance  Unsuspected foreign  Cause  Improper patient objects such as jewelry  Double exposure  Blur preparation  Reuse of an already exposed cassette  Improper patient movement.

Dentures  Older patients may have removable dentures for the upper or lower teeth. .

Dentures  Partial Dentures are attached to the remaining teeth with metal clips. .

Poor Gowning: Ear Rings  There we see an ear ring on a base posterior view. .

Poor Gowning: Ear Ring  A single ear ring on a lateral cervical spine view. .

Poor Gowning: Pins in Hair  Bobby pins can ruin cervical or skull radiographs. .

 You will not be able to get the patient to remove the dread locks so have the patient but their hair up for the A-P .More Hair Artifacts  Another example of mouse and dreadlocks.

Hair Extensions .

Poor Gowning: Necklace .

.Patient with arms across chest  Make sure the arms are to the patient’s sides and out of the view on A-P or PA views.

.Rings and Watch  The doctor failed to have the patient remove their rings and watch.

Patient with arm to side  Make sure the arms are properly positioned for lateral views. .

.Metallic artifacts on Lumbar View  Intern took film with patient in shorts.  Shorts had metal eyelets for the drawstrings.  Something in pocket.

Lateral Gonad Shield  It is very important to remove the shield after it is used.  The patient was too large to be done P-A. .

.Fingers in the spine  Keep the hands above the lumbar spine when taking the lateral view.

.Cassette Artifact Dirty Screens  Dirty or damaged screens will cause white spots on the image.

 Never use alcohol or detergents to clean screens.Dirty & Damaged Screens  The white spots on this film are the result of damaged or worn out screens. .

 The screens were not in proper contact in the middle of the cassette due to a bow in the cassette back.Poor Screen Contact  Note the blurry image in the spine but sharp image of the ribs. .

Processing artifacts  Processing artifacts are produced during the time the film is in the film processor.  Processing artifacts can be eliminated with a proper processor quality control program and frequent cleaning. .  Occasionally the best film processor will jam or malfunction and produce artifacts.

Common Processing Artifacts  Appearance  Guide shoe marks  Cause  Improper position of guide shoes in turn-around assembly.  Pi lines  Sharp increase or decrease in OD  Uniform dull gray fog  Dirt or chemical stains on rollers  Dirty or warped rollers  Improper or bad chemistry .

Film Guide Scratches  Guide shoes scratches are parallel and run in the direction of film travel. .

Other Processing Artifacts  Here we see hesitation marks on top of film. Perhaps from:  Power Failure  Processor jam .  This film remained in the developer too long.

.Other Processing Artifacts  This is what contaminated developer looks like.  Contaminated developer can also appear as a pink film.

.Processor Chemical Marks  This artifact is called a run back artifact.  Proper cleaning of the cross over rollers can reduce the incidence of this artifact.

 The upper rollers in the wash tank are supposed to squeegee the film. .Processor Water Marks  These spots are the result of water spots on the film.

Chemical Run Down Artifact  If the squeegee rollers in the developer rack do not work. the chemicals run down the film forming the appearance of water running down a window. .

Dirty Developer Rollers  The rollers in the developer tank or cross over are dirty.  This causes the black artifacts on the middle of the film. .  Oxidized developer is left on the film.

.  Result of film being feed crocked and jamming the processor.Tractor Marks from Film Jam  Marks that appear as tractor tracks on the upper left portion of the film are referred to as Tractor Marks.

 All handling artifacts are avoidable!!!! .Film Handling Artifacts  A number of artifacts can occur while the film is in storage.  Improper handling can cause artifacts. in the darkroom or in the x-ray room.  Film is sensitive to heat and humidity.  After exposure it is very sensitive to fog from lighting problems in the darkroom.

 Safelight too bright. .  Pressure or kink marks  Streaks of increased OD  Rough handling of film.  Light leak or other light in darkroom.  Film not completely in processor when darkroom door opened.  Film left in x-ray room during exposure.Common Handling & Storage Artifacts  Appearance  Fog  Cause  The temperature or humidity too high. too close or wrong filter.

tree or smudge static  Yellow-brown stain  Cause  Humidity or temperature too low  Thiosulfate left on film due to improper washing .Common Handling & Storage Artifacts  Appearance  Crown.

 Black spots are scratches from work surface.Film Handling Artifacts  Crescent shaped artifact is a nail crinkle mark. . It is caused by improper film handling.

.Film Handling Artifacts  The door to the darkroom was opened before the film was completely in the processor.

Film Handling Artifacts  The top of the film is exposed to light by opening to darkroom door or turning on the lights with the box open. .

.Film Handling Artifacts  Some roller artifacts are seen caused by developer being on the entrance rollers.  Cause: Pulling a film out of the processor feed tray.

Static Electricity  Static electricity discharge may appear as a tree or lightning strike.  Keep humidity in area at proper level.  It may also produce round smudges. .

Film Not Left in Box in Film Bin  The box that the film comes in serves as protection from scratching. .  If you take too many sheets out. replace excess film in box not just in the bin.

. fixer is retained on the emulsion.Improperly Washed Film  If the wash tank is not properly filled.  The retained fixer form silver sulfide and turns the image brown.