This page explains what is involved in a Sinogram and what to expect.

An Easy Read information sheet is included for your child.

What is a Sinogram?

A Sinogram is used to diagnose and assess an abnormal opening on the skin surface.

When you receive your appointment letter

If you are unable to keep this appointment, please inform the department as soon as possible.

If your child is likely to need a hoist during the appointment, please telephone us so that we can make sure this is ready for you.

Before the appointment

If you are pregnant or think you could be pregnant, please let us know. The x-rays used in the fluoroscopy scan could harm your unborn baby, so we would advise bringing another adult to come into the scanning room with your child.

If your child is 12 years old or older and of childbearing potential, we will ask them about their periods and any possibility that they could be pregnant; this is a legal obligation that we must ask.

The person bringing your child to the scan should have ‘Parental Responsibility’ for them. Parental Responsibility refers to the individual who has legal rights, responsibilities, duties, power and authority to make decisions for a child. If the person bringing your child does not have Parental Responsibility, we may have to cancel the scan.

What to bring with you?

  • It can help if your child has a favourite toy to hold to comfort them during the study. Electronic devices such as iPads are welcome.
  • You might want to bring some spare clothes in case any of the contrast liquid spills.
  • If you normally use a stoma bag please bring a spare bag with you.

The study

You are welcome to stay with your child throughout the study. Everyone staying inside the examination room will need to wear a lead coat.

Before we begin, your child will need to remove any metallic objects and wear a hospital gown.

Your child will lay on the x-ray bed and a cleaning solution will be applied to the Sinus/Fistula (a fistula is a passageway, or tunnel, that can develop in the body).

A tube will be inserted into the area. A liquid will pass through the tube into the body. This liquid shows on X-rays. A series of pictures will be taken with your child lying in different positions on the bed.

After the scan

The tube will be removed once the test is complete, and a small dressing may be applied. After this you will be free to go home.

A report outlining the results of the procedure will be sent to the doctor who referred your child for this test.

You may notice a sticky liquid seep from the area. This is normal and should pass.

In the week after the test if you notice any symptoms of an infection, such as pain at the site of the fistula/sinus, a temperature or feeling unwell, you should contact your GP for advice.

Are there any risks?

The contrast liquid will not interfere with any medicines your child is taking.

It is our legal duty to tell you about the potential risk of having a fluoroscopy study (sinogram). The studies are only ever requested if the benefits outweigh the risks involved. The study does use radiation, but the dose is kept as low as possible. This is because the radiographers are specially trained to obtain the best quality pictures while using the lowest amount of radiation possible.

Anyone staying in the room with your child will need to wear a lead apron – this works as a barrier to radiation. We advise that anyone who is pregnant or thinks they might be pregnant should not go into the room.

Your feedback

We take all feedback very seriously and want to hear about your experiences. Your feedback helps us to understand what we are doing well but importantly how we can improve. We will give you a feedback card but if you haven’t received one, please ask a member of staff. You can also provide feedback via our website.

Any concerns?

We know we do not always get things right. As explained above, please do raise any queries or issues with the ward staff in the first instance. We want to help and often we are able to resolve things quickly.

Patient Advice and Liaison Service (Pals)

Another way of raising a concern is to contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (Pals). The Pals team can offer independent advice and support, working with you to sort out a problem along with members of staff.

They are based in the main reception area and open from Monday to Friday from 10am to 5pm. You can also call them on 020 7829 7862 or email


The Complaints team are also available if you want to make a complaint. To contact them phone 020 7813 8402 or email

Other information

If you require a copy of this information in a different format or language, please contact the Pals team for assistance.

Compiled by:
The Radiology department in collaboration with the Child and Family Information Group This information does not constitute health or medical advice and will not necessarily reflect treatment at other hospitals.
Last review date:
January 2023