What is Ultrasound: Overview, Benefits, and Expected Results
Definition and Overview
Ultrasound is an imaging tool that is usually used to diagnose various diseases and other health conditions. This tool has the ability to create sound waves that will cause echoes when highlighted into the body. These waves will then create images that can be used by health professionals to diagnose the patient’s disease or condition at the time. Ultrasound is commonly known as ultrasonography or sonography.
Most ultrasound procedures are performed using ultrasound devices that are outside the body. However, there are several health conditions that require the sonar device to be inserted into the patient’s body.
Ways of working
Ultrasound equipment is usually used by general practitioners and specialists to get an overview of an organ in a patient. The pictures will be formed when the tip of the tool is moved in all the parts that want to be known, such as the abdomen for example.
The tip of the ultrasound device will emit sound waves that will penetrate the skin and will cause echoes. The echo captured by the tip will be recorded by the device and the results will be displayed on the screen. Even so, the quality of the resulting image is influenced by several factors such as air or gas, fat layer, bone and the expertise of the tool user.
When is Ultrasound Used?
Ultrasound is usually used as a diagnostic tool. But this tool can be used for inspection or even for treatment. Other uses of ultrasound that are quite common are:
Echocardiography – ultrasound is used to assess the work of the heart. This action can be done trans-torasik (the tip of the device is outside the body) or trans-esophageal (the tip of the tool is inserted into the esophagus through the mouth).
Evaluation of blood clots in blood vessels – Ultrasound can find blood clots in several health conditions such as thrombosis (blood clots) superficial or deep veins, aneurysms (abnormal dilation of blood vessels due to thinning or weakening of blood vessel walls), or stenosis (narrowing). This procedure is often used in patients who have had a stroke.
Abdominal Structure Evaluation – Ultrasound can be used to find the presence of gallstones, determine the presence or absence of infection in an organ, find a blockage in the bile duct, check for appendicitis or kidney stones, and to find the cause of a health condition such as abdominal pain (abdomen) section under.
Evaluate the thyroid gland for tumor growth or lumps. Evaluate the function of the knee joint to check for fluid buildup Assist doctors in the installation of intravenous ducts (through blood vessels) when veins are difficult to find Evaluate the uterus during pregnancy Look for abnormalities in the genitals or prostate, Diagnose cancer, Risks of Ultrasound.
Ultrasound is a fairly safe procedure and there are no related risks reported by patients regarding the safety of this process. However, this tool has limitations so that some doctors may add additional imaging tools such as X-rays, MRI, or CT-scan, which have other risks due to using radiation.
Method of Using Ultrasound
Before the examination is carried out, the doctor will first tell you the preparations that must be made for ultrasound. In some cases, the doctor may ask the patient to fast for 8 hours, especially when the part to be examined is the abdomen. Foods that are in the intestines can affect the quality of the ultrasound image.
You will then be asked to lie on the table. Then you will be asked to undress, especially in the section that will be on ultrasound. The sonogram (ultrasound technician) or doctor will then apply a special gel to the area to be examined. The gel works so that the tip of the ultrasound can move easily over the skin so that it can reduce friction on the skin. The gel also helps the process of sending sound waves into the body.
When the doctor or ultrasound technician moves the tip of the device around the area to be examined, low-frequency sound waves are delivered to the body. However, you will not be able to hear the sound of these waves because the frequency is outside the hearing range of the human ear. Sound waves will bounce back when they collide with solid objects. Then the computer will record the echo produced and display it as an image on a computer screen.
It is possible that the doctor will change the pressure on the tip of the tool from time to time or ask you to change positions so that you can reach a better angle.
After the doctor is satisfied with the image obtained, the examination gel will be removed and you can resume your activities or return to your inpatient room. Technicians or doctors need time to analyze the image, especially if they want to look for abnormalities in the image. In pregnancy examinations, doctors usually do an analysis together with the action.
To analyze the images obtained, the doctor or technician who performs the action needs a deep understanding of the structure of normal organs. Through careful vision, your doctor can determine whether there are abnormalities in your organs or not. In some cases, doctors may require further tests, such as tissue tests to provide a more precise diagnosis.