ULTRASONOGRAPHY: WHY AND HOW
The technology where ultrasound, a very high-frequency sound, is used to take live and diagnostic images from inside your body to be examined by the physician is called the medical ultrasound. The type of ultrasonogram we commonly face is obstetric ultrasound which is used to test pregnant women. Tendons, muscles, joints, blood vessels and other internal organs can be examined through ultrasound too. But unlike different types of diagnostic systems ultrasonography doesn’t require radiation. It is similar to the technology of sonar or radar. As a result, it is entirely a safe method to examine a fetus or any tissue or internal parts of our body.
WHY AN ULTRASOUND PERFORMED:
An ultrasound can suggest when a patient is facing pain, swelling, or other symptoms that indicate internal malfunctioning. An ultrasound can provide the view of several parts of your like:
- Brain(in infants)
- Blood vessels etc.
HOW AN ULTRASOUND PERFORMED:
Firstly, after changing into a hospital gown, you will be lying on a table with a section or your body, which will be examined, exposed. The sonographer, the ultrasound technician, will apply a lubricating jelly over the exposed skin. It makes the ultrasound transducer frictionless while moving over the skin. The ointment helps to transmit the sound wave while the sensor works as a microphone. The ripples from the transducer form a picture that can be interpreted by the doctor. The overall process takes about 30 minutes according to which part of the body examined. As it is an outpatient procedure, the patient is free to go out and do a day-to-day activity after the process is complete. You may need to fast for 8 to 12 hours before an ultrasound according to the fixed timetable given by the doctor. But, it depends on the organ that will be diagnosed. For example, in the case of gallbladder, liver or pancreas diagnosis you will only be prescribed to eat fat-free food the evening before the test. Point to be noted; you may eat your prescribed medicine or drink water. On the other hand, for bladder diagnosis, you will be told to drink a lot of water and to hold your urine to get a proper image of the bladder. Its done so that the remaining digest and undigested materials won’t create an interference during the diagnosis by blocking sound waves.
The patient must tell the physician or the prescribing doctor about any herbal supplement or prescription drugs they were taking before the test as it can scramble the result. The patient should follow the doctor’s instructions and ask questions whenever needed to prevent the minimal risks that are present in the procedure.