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Ultrasound Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What is ultrasound?

A. Ultrasound is the use of sound waves to obtain a medical image or picture of various organs and tissues in the body. It is a painless and safe procedure.

Ultrasound produces very precise images of your soft tissue (heart, blood vessels, uterus, bladder, etc.) and reveals internal motion such as heart beat and blood flow. It can detect diseased or damaged tissues, locate abnormal growths and identify a wide variety of changing conditions including fetal development, which enables our physicians to make a quick and accurate diagnosis.

Q. What will the exam be like?

A. The technologist performing the ultrasound study is known as a sonographer. All our technologists are highly skilled and educated. The technologists work under close supervision with our radiologists. Our radiologists will monitor the exam to assure that the most accurate results are obtained from your examination.

The technologist will assist the patient onto the examination table. An oil or transmission gel will be applied to the area of the body that will be examined. A transducer will be moved slowly over the body part being imaged. The transducer sends a signal to an on-board computer which processes the data and produces the ultrasound image. It is from this image that the diagnosis is made.

Q. How long will the exam take?

A. The exam usually takes from 30 minutes, depending upon the anatomy under study. The patient may be required to drink water to enhance the quality of the picture (sound travels better through water) and this could extend the time of the exam.

Q. When will the patient know the results?

A. The radiologist will study your films and report the findings to the referring physician within 24 hours. The referring physician will discuss the ultrasound results with the patient.

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