Ultrasound imaging, also known as sonography or US, uses the echos of high-frequency sound waves to produce pictures of the body.
Ultrasound is both painless and harmless. There are no x-rays or ionizing radiation. Ultrasound can be especially useful and convenient for “small parts” and specialty imaging such as obstetrics.
While you are being scanned, you will be lying on a padded table. The trained ultrasound technologist will apply gel to your skin and then the technologist will use a smoothly contoured probe to glide over your body while the ultrasound information is being captured.
Ultrasound is a particularly valuable diagnostic tool for evaluation of the carotid arteries, the gallbladder, the thyroid gland, superficial masses and the female pelvis (for both obstetric and gynecologic evaluations). Ultrasound examination, in conjunction with color Doppler imaging, can be used to evaluate arterial stenosis or to check for deep venous thrombosis (DVT or “blood clots”) of the lower extremity veins.
The information derived from an ultrasound examination is often complimentary or supplemental to a more complete, more extensive examination performed using MRI or CT.