It is a painless procedure, using sound waves. Ultrasound travels easily through liquid and soft tissue, but will “bounce back” if it hits something more solid such as bone or more solid tissue. An ultrasound will create an accurate visual image of your internal organs. It is widely used to monitor the well-being of an unborn baby and can also be used to monitor a variety of other conditions including gallstones, pancreatic problems, thyroid, kidneys, lymph nodes and musculoskeletal injuries in joints such as the shoulder, knee and ankle. Ultrasound can also be used to examine blood flow and to check for any thin or blocked blood vessels.
Visit our Scan Glossary for details of conditions Ultrasound scans are used for.
If you’ve never had an Ultrasound scan you might not know what to expect and this brief guide is designed to answer the questions that might be in your mind.
You might need to prepare for the scan; if it’s necessary, your appointment letter will make it clear what we want you to do. Some examples include: