This test is an x-ray that uses radiation to take a picture of structures inside the abdomen.

Reasons for Test

This test is used when there is a concern that there is a problem in your abdomen. Some symptoms that may make your doctor concerned include:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Abdominal pain or side pain
  • Bloating
  • Blood in the urine
  • Constipation or diarrhea
  • Bloody or dark black stools

Abdominal Organs

3d male digestive organs
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What to Expect

Prior to Test

You may be asked not to eat or drink anything for four hours before your test.

You will remove your clothes and put on a hospital gown. You will also need to remove all metal items, like jewelry and watches.

Tell your doctor if you:

  • Have taken any bismuth medicines (such as Pepto-Bismol) within the last four days
  • Had a barium contrast x-ray within the last four days
  • Have an intrauterine device (IUD)
  • Are pregnant or could possibly be pregnant

Description of Test

You will lie flat on your back under the x-ray machine and remain still while the x-ray is taken. You may be asked to shift to other positions for more x-rays.

After Test

You will be able to leave after the test is done.

How Long Will It Take?

About 10 minutes

Will It Hurt?



The x-ray may help your doctor find the source of your problem. If the x-ray shows an abnormality, you may need more testing, which may include:

  • Ultrasound]]>—a test that uses sound waves to visualize the inside of the body
  • ]]>Abdominal and pelvic CT scan]]>—a type of x-ray that uses a computer to make pictures of the inside of the body

Call Your Doctor

Call your doctor if you have any questions about the test, your condition, or your test results.

In case of emergency, CALL 911.