Life’s full of cost-benefit judgements: the risks associated with crossing the road are usually ignored because the benefits are seen to be sufficiently great. It is a fact that X-rays can damage DNA; it’s also a fact that this can slightly increase the risk of inducing cancer (the UK’s National Radiological Protection Board says so). But the benefit of the information provided by a good X-ray is generally perceived as far outweighing this risk.
I’m an X-ray machine. All my X-rays, unseen,
Can penetrate through you, unheeded.
I can show what’s inside you so the docs can provide you
With all of the treatment that’s needed.
Have you’ve smashed up your knee? Maybe swallowed a key?
Or a part of you’s hurting a lot?
You just lie on my table as still as you’re able,
And I’ll pinpoint the troublesome spot.
P’rhaps you’re wondering why there’s a white-coated guy
Standing safely behind lead-lined screens?
It’s because some X-rays tend to go their own ways –
Mister White-coat, he knows what that means!
Now, don’t be alarmed, he’ll check you’re not harmed:
Back at college, they trained him a lot.
So don’t worry yourself, the effect on your health
Won’t be too bad. Well, probably not.
When I fire my X-ray it might hit DNA,
Which I honestly do not intend to;
But I will give you data the docs can use later
To find out the best way to mend you.
I’m high-energy, see, that’s the trouble with me;
And to make sure my X-rays get through you,
I use thousands of volts (less than lightning bolts).
Well, you don’t want a half X-ray, do you?
Right: just breathe in and hold . . . don’t exhale ’til you’re told…
. . . and relax now. That’s all there is to it.
Your spine’s out of line, but your abdomen’s fine –
And I know, ’cos I’ve just seen right through it!