Why can children get breast x-rays

X-ray examination of the chest

The novel method of dark field imaging, which is still an experimental approach, is also a type of X-ray, but the rays are used differently.

With the conventional X-ray method, as mentioned, the rays are attenuated differently when they hit different types of tissue. With dark field imaging, the precise scattering of the rays in the tissue is also made visible. For example, the scattering occurs at the air-tissue interfaces that pass through the Gas exchange in the lungs are present in large numbers.

Every interface between body tissue and air can be recognized, structural changes in the lung tissue become visible early on. In a healthy lung, the radiation is scattered in all directions, resulting in a strong dark field signal.

At the Emphysema decreases the number of air-tissue interfaces due to the dysfunction of the Alveoli, i.e. where the gas exchange between blood and breathing air takes place, it continues to decrease. The X-rays are less scattered and the dark-field signal is weakened. Theoretically, the disease can be recognized at a very early stage, and it can also be classified into different degrees of severity. However, this method has to be further developed before it can be used in clinical practice.