What is ultrasound?
Ultrasound, also known as sonography, is a non-invasive and effective way to look at particular organs and soft tissues inside the body. High frequency sound waves are sent into the body through a hand-held device by moving the probe over the body. A detailed image is then created from the 'echoes' that bounce back onto an ultrasound monitor, which captures a real time image that is sent for reporting.
Is there preparation for an ultrasound?
For certain parts of the body preparation maybe required, and usually this is for examinations on the pelvic and abdominal area. Fasting periods or having a full bladder are common requests, but all information will be given to you during the booking process.
Why would my Doctor refer me for an ultrasound?
Ultrasounds have many applications to help in the diagnosis of determining medical conditions. Commonly, this scan is used for obstetric purposes, such as checking fetal growth, but is regularly used in the evaluation of organs in the abdominal and pelvic area, such as kidneys, liver and gallbladder. Assessment of blood vessels, such as checking for deep vein thrombosis is also used in ultrasound, as well as injection guidance into joints or biopsies and fine needle aspirations.
Are there risks involved for an ultrasound?
Ultrasounds are considered safe. This scan does not use radiation, therefore it does not have the same risks as what an X-ray or CT scan does.