What is Ultrasound?
Ultrasound, also called Sonography, uses the ultrasound probe (transducer) and ultrasound gel to transmit high frequency sound waves through human tissue. Some of the sound waves bounce back to the transducer, and the reflected sounds are used by a computer to form the ultrasound image. There is no radiation dose associated with the ultrasound scan. Ultrasound is safe, noninvasive, and does not use ionizing radiation. Ultrasound images are also captured in real-time. They can show structures and movements of the body’s internal organs, including blood flowing through blood vessels. Ultrasound is easy-to-use and less expensive than other imaging methods.
Why would I get an Ultrasound?
Ultrasound is used to help diagnose the causes of pain, swelling and infection in the body’s internal organs. Ultrasound is useful for assessing heart and blood vessels, liver, gallbladder, spleen, pancreas, kidneys, bladder, uterus, ovaries, pregnancy, eyes, thyroid, and scrotum. It’s also used to help guide biopsies, diagnose heart conditions, and assess damage after a heart attack. Ultrasound scanning gives a clear picture of soft tissues that do not show up well on x-ray images.
Who cannot get an Ultrasound?
For standard diagnostic ultrasound, there are no known harmful effects on humans.
How do I prepare for an Ultrasound?
The procedure requires little to not preparation. Wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing. Leave jewelry at home, and you may be asked to wear a gown. Preparation for the procedure will depend on the type of examination you will have. You may be asked to abstain from eating and drinking before exam or you may be asked to drink lots of water prior to exam.