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Ultrasound

Quality Medical Care
Melbourne Location
675 S. Babcock Street
Melbourne, FL 32901
Phone:  (321) 951-1010
Fax:  (321) 726-8626

Ultrasound MachineUltrasound Machine

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS REGARDING ULTRASOUND

What is Ultrasound?

Why Is Ultrasound Performed?

What Can I Expect During An Abdominal Ultrasound Examination?

What Can I Expect During A Pelvic Or Transvaginal Ultrasound Examination?

What Can I Expect During A Vascular (Doppler) Examination?

How Long Will My Ultrasound Examination Take?

Is The Ultrasound Examination Safe?

Do I Need A Referral (Prescription) To Have My Ultrasound Examination?

When Will I Know The Results Of My Examination?

What Should I Do to Prepare for an Ultrasound Exam?

WHAT IS ULTRASOUND?

Ultrasound is an imaging procedure that uses very high-frequency sound waves to produce an image of many of the internal structures of the body.  This study for the most part is painless, some patient may find discomfort in the pressure applied by the sonographer, but is generally well tolerated.  Ultrasound produces very precise images of certain parts of the body.

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WHY IS ULTRASOUND PERFORMED?

Ultrasound uses high performance digital sound waves, not X-rays.  For certain areas of the body these sound waves can image as well or better than other imaging devices.  These sound waves are harmless and may be used to complete safety, even on pregnant women.

Abdominal ultrasound looks at internal organs such as gallbladder, kidney, or liver to assess pain or other symptoms.

Pelvic ultrasound in females looks primarily at the uterus and ovaries, but the bladder may also be visualized.  In males, the pelvic ultrasound usually focuses on the bladder and the prostate gland. 

Vascular ultrasound looks at the blood vessels in the neck, arms, or legs to detect narrow or blocked arteries, or blood clots in the veins.

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WHAT CAN I EXPECT DURING AN ABDOMINAL ULTRASOUND EXAMINATION?

The patient is positioned by the sonographer (technologist who performs the exam) on an examination table.  A clear warm gel is applied to the skin over the area to be examined.  This helps to transmit the sound waves by excluding air and will not harm your skin or clothes.  A soft covered device called a transducer is gently moved over the skin surface by the sonographer and images are produced on a monitor.

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WHAT CAN I EXPECT DURING A PELVIC OR TRANSVAGINAL ULTRASOUND EXAMINATION?

The patient lies on a table with the abdominal area exposed and with a full bladder.  The sonographer (technologist who performs the exam) will put a clear warm gel on the skin surface.  The gel helps to transmit the sound waves by excluding air and will not harm your skin or clothes.  An instrument called a transducer is gently moved over the skin surface by the sonographer. 

Pelvic ultrasound may include a transvaginal ultrasound to better see the ovaries and uterus.  In this exam the patient is asked to empty the bladder.  The patient will then be asked to place a covered transvaginal transducer (approximately the size and shape of a tampon) into the vagina, or if the patient would prefer, this will be placed by the female sonographer.  The sonographer will then gently manipulate the transducer to provide an internal ultrasound examination.  This maybe uncomfortable, but should not be painful, and is the best way to evaluate the ovaries and uterus.

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WHAT CAN I EXPECT DURING A VASCULAR (DOPPLER) EXAMINATION?

The patient will lie or sit on a table and the sonographer will put a clear warm gel on the skin surface of the area to be studied.  The gel helps to transmit the sound waves by excluding air and will not harm your skin or your clothes.  The sonographer will then gently press a transducer along the area.  If the test is done on your neck, your head will be turned to the side, as if you were looking over your shoulder. 

During the Doppler ultrasound you may hear a “swooshing” noise.  This is the sound of your blood flowing.  You may also see tracings of your blood flow on the screen.  These are normal occurances.

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HOW LONG WILL MY ULTRASOUND EXAMINATION TAKE?

The abdominal ultrasound will take about 20 minutes.  The pelvic ultrasound and vascular (Doppler) ultrasound will take about 30 minutes.

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IS THE ULTRASOUND EXAMINATION SAFE?

Quality Medical Care provides state of the art equipment with high performance digital ultrasound with duplex and color Doppler.  The Radiologist and technologists (sonographers) have extensive experience and training in ultrasound.  Since ultrasound uses sound waves rather than radiation, it is harmless.

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DO I NEED A REFERRAL (PRESCRIPTION) TO HAVE MY ULTRASOUND EXAMINATION?

Yes, your doctor must provide a referral (prescription) in order for you to receive a examination.  In addition, some insurance carriers or HMO’s require a pre-certification.  Please discuss this with your doctor and your insurance company or HMO prior to your test.

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WHEN WILL I KNOW THE RESULTS OF MY EXAMINATION?

A Radiologist will review your study the same day and a written report will be available within 24 hours.  A detailed written report of the procedure, findings, and results will be sent to your physician within 24 hours.  Your physician will then call you to discuss the results.  Urgent results will be telephoned immediately to your doctor.

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WHAT SHOULD I DO TO PREPARE FOR AN ULTRASOUND EXAM?

Do not eat solid food or drink anything after midnight prior to your exam.  Small amounts of clear fluids are allowed and essential medication may be taken with a sip of water.  If you are diabetic, consult your doctor.

Drink 32 ounces of water 1 ½  hours prior to your exam so that your bladder is full.

No special preparation is necessary.

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