Ultrasound Scans

Information about Ultrasound

Ultrasound imaging (or sonography) is a method of acquiring information about your internal organs using high-frequency sound waves. Ultrasound can be used to show the size, shape and texture of internal organs and blood vessels. The ultrasound machine uses the very latest technology and has no known harmful effects. Ultrasound allows us to see inside your body without using X-rays or surgery.


To produce an ultrasound image, a hand held probe called a transducer is used to transmit ultrasound waves into your body. The waves are reflected off the various tissues in your body and returned to the transducer as an echo. The ultrasound signals (echoes) are converted into electronic signals that are in turn converted into an image of the structures in your body. The examination is painless and there is no ionising radiation involved. For standard diagnostic ultrasound examinations, there are no known harmful effects.


If you are scheduled for an abdominal scan, you must fast for at least 6 hours prior to the scan. You may however have small sips of water and should take any prescribed medication. We try to facilitate early morning appointments for patients who have to fast. If you are having a scan of your pelvis you will have to have a full bladder for your scan. You will need to drink at least 1 litre of water one hour prior to your appointment to fill your bladder. There is no preparation for scans of the thyroid, scrotum, soft tissues, carotid arteries or leg veins.


You will be made comfortable on a couch and the doctor (Consultant Radiologist)
undertaking the scan will place some warm jelly on the area to be scanned.

He/she will then place the ultrasound probe (transducer) over the area of interest and scan in different directions. He/she will take images of the various structures he/she sees during the scan. All you need to do is remain as still as possible while the images are being taken. If you are having a scan of your abdomen or pelvis the doctor may ask you to hold your breath while he is taking images.

The Radiologist will write a report to your referring doctor detailing the findings of the ultrasound scan. You can get the results from your doctor usually within 24 hours.
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