General Ultrasound

Accurate & safe imaging

Introduction

An ultrasound scan is a safe, accurate and non-invasive imaging technique, commonly used to obtain information about a variety of conditions throughout the body. Ultrasound is also a highly operator dependant imaging modality relying on the skill and experience of the sonographers and medical specialist sonologists involved in the performance and interpretation of the examination.

At Canberra Specialist Ultrasound we specialize in ultrasound imaging and have assembled a team of health professionals who have a passion for performing high quality ultrasound investigations utilising the very latest technology.

What is an ultrasound examination?

Ultrasound uses very high frequency sound waves to produce detailed diagnostic images of structures in your body. Over the past 50 years it has been increasingly utilised to investigate a wide variety of medical conditions. Ultrasound has the advantage of producing images without using radiation, without patient discomfort and it has no adverse side effects.

Scanning by an Accredited Medical Sonographer in close collaboration with a medical specialist Sonologist produces images, which are interpreted to assist the management of many medical conditions.

Ultrasound is used for a growing number of applications including obstetric, gynaecological, abdominal, musculoskeletal, vascular, breast and paediatric investigations. Ultrasound is also a highly accurate and radiation free method of guiding accurate needle placement for injections and biopsies.

What happens during the scan?

Warm gel is applied to the area being examined and a small hand held probe is used to produce real time images of the area under investigation. Pressure may be applied with the probe and you may be asked to hold your breath while images are captured. You may be scanned in a variety of positions to produce optimum images and may be asked to perform certain maneuvers (especially during musculoskeletal examinations).

Studies involving assessment of blood flow may produce pulse noises during the examination.

It is common for selected areas to be measured and documented for review this is not a cause for alarm.

What about the results?

An Accredited Medical Sonographer conducts the ultrasound in close collaboration with a medical specialist Sonologist who will also produce the final report for your doctor.

Preparation

Depending on the area to be scanned you may have to follow particular dietary instructions.

You will be given the appropriate information when making your appointment.

Pelvis, lower abdomen, kidney, bladder and obstetric examinations require you to have a moderately full bladder. You will need to complete drinking 500ml of water one hour prior to the scan and refrain from going to the toilet.

It is not necessary for you to be in great discomfort with an overfull bladder as this is unpleasant for you and detrimental to the quality of the examination. Please feel free to go to the toilet and relieve some pressure if required. We understand the anxiety an overfull bladder brings and this is why we choose a 500ml preparation.

Upper abdominal scans such as liver, gall bladder or pancreas require you to fast (i.e. no eating, drinking or smoking for six hours prior to the examination).

If you are a diabetic or suffer epilepsy please discuss the timing of the scan with our bookings staff.

Any medication you normally take should be continued with a small amount of water as necessary.

There is no preparation for musculoskeletal or peripheral vascular investigations.


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