Ultrasound is a diagnostic procedure that uses high-frequency sound waves to create images of the internal organs and tissues in the human body. An ultrasound uses echoes, rather than radiation, to produce an image – also called a sonogram – and construct the picture. This way, doctors can identify any issues inside the body.
Although ultrasound is best known for its use in evaluating pregnancy, it is also very helpful in biopsies. An ultrasound can help detect cancerous tumors or fluid-filled cysts.
There are two general classifications of ultrasound: external and internal ultrasound scanning. The kind of ultrasound a patient needs will depend on the area of examination.
What External Ultrasound Is Used For
In an external ultrasound, the transducer is guided and moved over the skin to capture pictures. The technician will first apply a lubricating gel on the patient’s skin over the body part to be examined, and this allows the device to glide smoothly to form the imagery.
Ultrasound scanning in obstetrics is used to examine the health and development of an unborn fetus. Other reasons for abdominal sonography are to help doctors examine pelvic organs, such as when identifying gallstones or appendicitis.
Another noninvasive ultrasound test is the Doppler ultrasound, which is used to analyze blood flow – particularly in the arms or legs. Sound waves bounce off red blood cells to construct the image of blood vessels, organs, and tissues. This ultrasound can detect the presence of a blood clot, plaque, or inflammation that may be causing abnormal blood flow inside a vessel.
Why Are Internal Ultrasound Scans Done?
This type of scan is often performed as a transvaginal ultrasound for examining the female reproductive organs such as the uterus, fallopian tubes, ovaries, and cervix. The technician will insert the probe inside a woman’s vaginal canal to perform the pelvic examination.
A transvaginal exam allows doctors to determine any abnormal vaginal bleeding in the patient. It can also analyze pelvic abnormalities, ectopic pregnancy, signs of infertility, or cancer.
Another type of internal ultrasound is endoscopic ultrasound. This is typically used for biopsies to collect tissue samples.
A thin, long, flexible tube called an endoscope is introduced in the mouth, down the throat, and through the esophagus and/or stomach while the patient is under mild anesthesia. Using an endoscope, experts can visualize the lungs, pancreas, liver, gallbladder, and stomach.
Ultrasound Scanning Services in South Carolina
Ultrasound can help a physician a great deal in analyzing a patient’s overall health. They can assess the organs and tissues of a person using minimally invasive (internal) or noninvasive (external) methods.
Equipped with state-of-the-art facilities, SC Internal Medicine Associates and Rehabilitation is ready to provide an accurate assessment and diagnosis of your condition in order to best treat you and keep you healthy.
Contact us today if you wish to know more about our medical services or to schedule a consultation. You may call us at (803) 749-1111 or request an appointment online. We want only the best for our clients’ and their families’ health, and we will partner with you in helping you stay happy and healthy.