An x-ray of the Turkish saddle can be survey or sighting. With a plain radiograph, the doctor examines the condition of the cranium in general. Aiming radiography involves a more thorough study of individual parts of the skull - in particular, the Turkish saddle.
During the exposure, the patient can sit, stand, or lie on his back or stomach, depending on the desired image projection. The radiologist usually takes 1-2 pictures. Most common position:
- the patient lies on his back, arms are along the body, the chin is lowered;
- the head is rotated at an angle of 45 degrees to the side being examined (you can put a soft roller for convenience);
- the head is fixed with an elastic bandage;
- adjacent organs are covered with protective lead plates.
During radiographic fixation, the patient should not breathe or swallow.
Another installation method:
- the patient lies on his stomach or sits, his head is pressed sideways to the surface of the table;
- the upper limbs are located along the body, the forearms rest on the surface of the table;
- the shoulder and chin adjacent to the table should be slightly raised with a wedge-shaped roller so that the median sagittal cranial plane is parallel to the plane of the x-ray film;
- the head is fixed.
At the end of the diagnostic procedure, the patient is sent home or to the doctor, depending on the situation.
X-ray pathology of the Turkish saddle
On the radiograph of the Turkish saddle, pituitary tumors can be detected. Signs of such a pathological process are:
- local or total areas of osteoporosis, characterized by bone thinning;
- atrophic changes in the walls of the bone;
- unevenness of the inner outline of the saddle;
- thinning of the wedge-shaped processes;
- the emergence of a "double loop".
These signs indicate the presence of a small pituitary tumor. At the same time, the doctor can pay attention to such pathological manifestations as thickening of the occipital and frontal bones, calcification of the hard shell of the brain and the formation of calcifications in the brain tissue.
A large Turkish saddle on an x-ray may indicate pathological conditions such as pituitary adenoma, cyst, aneurysm, primary hypothyroidism, increased intracranial pressure, etc. If it is necessary to confirm or clarify the diagnosis, the doctor may additionally prescribe computed or magnetic resonance imaging. Modern tomography equipment helps to detect even very small neoplasms.
In some patients, x-rays reveal the so-called "empty Turkish saddle." In the image, the pathology is located under the diaphragm of the bone formation and is manifested by the following signs:
- bottom symmetry in the frontal plane;
- vertical increase in education, isolation of the configuration;
- bottom bypass on the sagittal image.
Symptoms of such changes may be absent, therefore, when an “empty Turkish saddle” is found, they often resort only to dynamic observation of patients. Pituitary dysfunction is more common in women.