X is for x ray: Image distortion

Today is image distortion.  There is really only one characteristics (actually an artifact) we will be looking at; bending.  (Note to those who use wired sensors, it is not possible to bend the sensor without breaking it 🙂 so this will not apply to you).


Bending occurs when the film or phosphor plate curves on either the palate or floor of the mouth.  This results in an image with elongation in the area of the bend.  Sometimes there will be a white area where the x rays did not hit the phosphor plate. Below is an example of bending showing elongation of the image in the area of the bend.

Note the elongation of the image at the superior aspect with the white areas in the corner where the bend occurred.

Phosphor plates will have a white (decreased density) area of a bend.  Analog film with have a black (increased density) area of a bend.

Take home points

Bend = Image distortion (elongation)

Next week: Inverse square law and changing PID/cone length

Should you have any questions or thoughts on this topic, please let me know.

Thanks and enjoy!