What is an ultrasound?
Ultrasound scans are an effective way of assessing soft tissue structures of the body and visualising the flow of blood through the circulatory system.
Since ultrasound services do not involve radiation and is non-invasive it is commonly employed as the initial imaging investigation for a range of conditions. Not all causes of pain are identifiable on the ultrasound and further investigations may be requested.
What preparation is required?
Preparation is important for a number of ultrasound examinations. Preparations may include fasting and filling of the bladder prior to the ultrasound. Your preparation instructions will be explained to you when you make your booking.
What will happen during the examination?
You may be asked to change into a gown and possibly remove jewellery.
You will lie on an examination table and the
sonographer, who will perform your scan, will apply ultrasound gel to the area being examined. This allows for good contact between the skin and the ultrasound transducer. For each body part, there are routine images that will be sought.
There may be times when the sonographer scans an area where you are not tender. This is to build up a complete picture of the anatomy and look for causes of referred pain.
When the sonographer has completed the scan, they will discuss the imaging with the radiologist (specialist medical imaging doctor).
Are there any risks?
Ultrasound scans utilise high-frequency sound waves (mechanical vibrations) when producing images. No ionising radiation is used. Ultrasound has been used in medicine since the 1950’s and there have been no confirmed adverse effects attributed to diagnostic ultrasound exposure in this time.
After the examination
The images will be reviewed and reported by our radiologist. This can take up to 6 hours. For your convenience, we can generally deliver the imaging and report to your doctor by the next working day. Alternatively, your doctor may request that you wait or return later to collect the report.