X-Ray Single Knee AP&LAT View

About the test

X-ray knee AP & LAT view may be prescribed to visualize the knee joint from both anteroposterior and lateral sides.  This test helps the doctors to detect various conditions related to the knee joint.

The knee joint comprises of -

  • Bones
    • Femur (thigh bone)
    • Tibia (shin bone)
    • Patella (kneecap)
  • Cartilages – The shock absorbers that act as a cushion and help the bones to move smoothly next to each other.
    • Meniscus
    • Articular cartilage
  • Ligaments – Fibrous tissues that act as the connecting ropes between bones.
    • ACL (anterior cruciate ligament)
    • PCL (posterior cruciate ligament)
    • MCL (medial collateral ligament)
    • LCL (lateral collateral ligament)

An X-ray knee AP View –

In the AP view the X-Rays pass through the knee from front to back. This produces a black and white picture of the joint that helps the doctors to clearly visualize the reduced joint space caused due to cartilage loss, meniscus disorders, and/or ligament laxity.

An X-Ray Knee Standing LAT View –

In the LAT view, the images are produced only in the supine (horizontal) position. The patient may be asked to lie down and bend the knee to 30 degrees. The lateral view makes it easier for the doctors to comprehend the condition of the patellofemoral joint (joint between kneecap and thighbone).  The lateral image of the knee joint also allows the doctor to assess the condition of the soft tissues.

Why get tested?

The test helps the doctors to visualize and detect any -

  • Changes in the soft tissues
  • Space between the joints
  • Signs of onset of arthritis
  • Trauma or fracture


  • No specific preparation is required before undergoing an X-Ray Knee standing AP & LAT view.
  • The technician may ask the patient to wear loose fitted clothes.
  • The patients are advised to inform the doctor about any metal implants from surgeries beforehand as these implants block the rays from passing through the knee.

Frequently asked questions

Q.Why would a patient need to undergo an X-ray knee AP & LAT view test?

An X-ray knee AP & LAT view may be prescribed to get a clear view of the knee joint and the surrounding area. The test may be recommended if the doctor suspects a bone fracture or degeneration of the tissues in the knee. The two views enable the doctor to clearly visualize the knee and detect any abnormality present in the joint. The test may also be prescribed as a diagnostic measure to see the onset of arthritis in the knee.

Q.What can one expect during an X-ray knee AP & LAT view test?

During an X-ray knee AP & LAT view test the patient will be asked to wear loose fitted clothes. The technician will then instruct the patients to take a position in which the clearest image can be obtained. For the LAT view, the patient will have to lie down and bend the knee at an angle of 30 degrees to get a clear picture of the patellofemoral joint.

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X-Ray Single Knee AP&LAT View