ultrasound on a woman's stomach

What is it?

A diagnostic medical ultrasound is a sound wave which creates an image of internal organs, vessels and tissues in the body. The image is produced by an ultrasound machine when a hand-held transducer operated by an ultrasound specialist is kept in constant contact with the body. The transducer emits an inaudible, high-frequency sound wave that passes through the body and then bounces back to the transducer, creating an image on a television viewing monitor.

Since ultrasound imaging is radiation-free, it serves as a safe form of scanning as a fetal development ultrasound for women who are pregnant. It is also useful in detecting abdominal conditions, breast cysts or gallstones.

What to Expect

On the day of the diagnostic medical ultrasound, patients are advised to wear comfortable clothing and may be asked to drink water, depending on the part of the body that will be examined. Water will help produce clearer images, since sound waves travel more easily through fluid. Some patients may be asked to refrain from eating or drinking 8 hours prior to their ultrasound. Depending on what type of examination is required and which part of body is being evaluated, the total time for a diagnostic medical ultrasound can range from 30 minutes to more than one hour. Test results will be faxed to the patient’s referring physician within 24 hours of the appointment date.

Maryville Imaging complies with applicable Federal civil rights laws, does not discriminate and does not exclude people or treat them differently because of or on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, age, disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and/or expression, genetic information and testing, pregnancy, national origin, citizenship, veteran status military status, unfavorable discharge from military, or other lawfully protected status.

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