Cholangiography is the imaging of the bile duct (also known as the biliary tree) by x-rays. There are at least two kinds of cholangiography:
- percutaneous transhepatic cholangiography (PTC): Examination of liver and bile ducts by x-rays. This is accomplished by the insertion of a thin needle into the liver carrying a contrast medium to help to see blockage in liver and bile ducts.
- endoscopic retrograde choledochography (ERC). Although this is a form of imaging, it is both diagnostic and therapeutic, and is often classified with surgeries rather than with imaging.
In both cases fluorescent fluids are used to create contrasts that make the diagnosis possible. Cholangiography has largely replaced the previously used method of intravenous cholangiography (IVC).