Lateral Projection of Sternum (Decubitus)

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

A lateral view of sternum when patient is in severe injury a dorsal decubitus position is usually used.

Structure and Pathology Demonstrated:


The entire length of the sternum is shown. Fractures of sternum is shown. Manubrium, Sternal Angle, body, Xiphoid Process is demonstrated.

Technical Factors:


Image Receptor size – 24 x 30 cm (10 x 12 inches), lengthwisee
Grid Front or Stationary grid should be used.
65 +- 5 kVp
mAs 45
Note: The kV and mAs uses a:
(Small focal spot, 3 phase 12 pulse generator, 16:1 Grid Screen/Film Speed 30)

Shielding and Respiration


Shield patient gonads
Suspend respiration at the end of deep inspiration to obtain high contrast between the posterior surface of the sternum and the adjacent structures.

Part and Patient Position


Extend patient’s arm over the head to prevent superimposition to sternum.
Provide pillow for comfort of patient’s head
Support under lower thoracic region to position the long axis of the sternum.
Adjust patient’s body until broad surface of sternum become perpendicular to the plane of image receptor.
Center the sternum to midline of the gridded cassette.
Upper border of IR is 1 ½ inches or 3.8 cm above the jugular notch.
If necessary apply compression band across the hips for immobilization.

Patient Position


Place the patient in a lateral recumbent position.
Flex the patient’s hips and knees to make a comfortable position.

Central Ray


CR is perpendicular to gridded cassette
Directed to mid-sternum and entering the lateral border.

Radiographic Criteria


Structure Shown

Lateral view of the entire sternum
Sternum is free of superimposition by the soft tissues of shoulder or arms
Sternum is free of superimposition by the ribs
The inferior portion of the shoulder is not obscured by the patient breast in females.

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