Ultrasounds, also known as sonograms, are scans which use high frequency sound waves to create an image of the inside of our bodies. Ultrasounds can be used to diagnose medical conditions, monitor unborn babies and even help surgeons. If you have an upcoming ultrasound, it’s important to know what to expect and be prepared! Our blog gives you a complete guide on preparing for an ultrasound scan, keep reading for more!

Your Guide To Ultrasounds

Read below to find out more about ultrasounds, and how you can prepare for yours!

What Happens During The Scan?

If it’s your first time having an ultrasound, it’s important to know what the process is like so that you know what to expect! A small device called an ultrasound probe is used to create the high-frequency sound waves. These waves are then turned into an image which will be shown to you on a screen.

Ultrasounds can last from 15 minutes to 45, and are a painless, non-invasive procedure. There are three main types of ultrasound:

  • External Ultrasound – The probe is moved over the skin
  • Internal Ultrasound – The probe is inserted
  • Endoscopic Ultrasound – The probe is inserted further into the body

After most ultrasounds, you will be fine to go home, eat, drive and do your usual daily activities. However, if you have an endoscopic ultrasound, you may be given a sedative to help you relax. If you are given a sedative, have someone come to collect you, and stay with you for at least 24 hours before returning to your usual activities.

How Can I Prepare For My Ultrasound?

Inorder to improve the image quality, your GP or ultrasound technician may advise you to do the following:

  • Eat Normally – It’s usually advised that you don’t skip meals and you eat as you normally would before an ultrasound scan. However, if you are having a scan of your liver or gallbladder, you may be required to eat a few hours before the scan.
  • Drink water – Drinking water is an important part of an ultrasound scan, especially for pregnant women, as it allows for a better image of your unborn baby. You will probably be advised to drink water but NOT go to the toilet until after your ultrasound is complete.
  • Medications – Be sure to tell your doctor about any medications or prescriptions you are taking at the time of your ultrasound so that they don’t put you at risk of any complications.
  • Accessories – Your ultrasound technician will also advise you not to wear jewellery, perfumes or lotions before your ultrasound as these products can interfere with the ultrasound gel. You should wear comfortable, loose clothing.

Duality Health: Private Ultrasound Clinic

If you’re looking for a professional, private ultrasound, look no further. Here at Duality Health, we offer private scans and exceptional ultrasounds for our patients. To find out more about our private ultrasound clinic, contact us today on 028 308 33666 if you’re in Newry, or 028 252 56093 if you’re in Galgorm.