Diagnostic Ultrasound Studies
Ultrasound imaging produces pictures of the internal organs of the body using sound waves. Ultrasound imaging, also known as sonography, involves the use of a small transducer (probe) and ultrasound gel placed directly on the skin. High-frequency sound waves are transmitted from the probe through the gel into the body. The transducer collects the sounds that bounce back and a computer then uses those sound waves to create an image. Ultrasound examinations do not use ionizing radiation (as used in x-rays), thus there is no radiation exposure to the patient. Because ultrasound images are captured in real-time, they can show the structure and movement of the body's internal organs, as well as blood flowing through blood vessels. Ultrasound imaging is a noninvasive medical test that helps physicians diagnose and treat medical conditions of the following organs:
- Urinary bladder
- Uterus, Ovaries, and Fetus in pregnant patients
- Thyroid and parathyroid glands
- Scrotum (testicles)
- Heart and blood vessels, including the abdominal aorta and its major branches
Ultrasound is also used to guide minimally invasive procedures such as needle biopsies, in which needles are used to sample cells from an abnormal area like thyroid gland or breast tissue for laboratory testing.
What Can You Expect During the Ultrasound?
You will be assisted on an examination table. At this time, a transmission gel will be applied to the area of your body that will be examined. A transducer will be moved slowly over the body part being imaged. The transducer sends a signal to a computer that produces the ultrasound image. You will feel slight pressure and the movement of the transducer over the body.
For Your Personal Safety and Comfort:
- Wear comfortable clothing
- Avoid wearing jewelry.
- Avoid soft drinks before the exam (if no special instructions, water is acceptable)
Instructions for you
- Abdominal Ultrasound - Exam should take about 30 minutes . Fasting 6 hours prior to exam is required
- Biopsy - Thyroid - Procedure takes approximately 1 hour.
- Carotid Duplex Ultrasound - Do not wear clothing such as a turtleneck or shirts with high collars. Exam takes 30 minutes.
- 2D Echo Ultrasound (Echocardiogram) - There are no special instructions for you
- Extremity Ultrasound -There are no special instructions for you.
- Gallbladder Ultrasound - Exam should take about 30 minutes. Fasting 12 - 14 hours prior to exam is preferred.
- Liver Ultrasound - Exam takes about 30 minutes.
- Pelvic Ultrasound - Drink 32 ounces of water at least 30 minutes prior to appointment. Do not empty your bladder prior to the exam.
- Peripheral Vascular Study of the Lower Leg Arteries - Pants must be removed prior to exam. Exam should last about 30 minutes.
- Renal Ultrasoun - There are no special instructions for this exam. Exam should take about 30 minutes.
- Thyroid Ultrasound - There are no special instructions for this exam.
- Venous Doppler/Duplex Ultrasound - There are no special instructions for this exam.