Ultrasound is a medical procedure that uses sound waves to obtain a medical image or picture of various organs and tissues in the body. Ultrasound is a safe, painless and effective diagnostic procedure. Exams generally take between 30-60 minutes depending on the information requested by your physician.

The purpose of Ultrasound is to:

  • Provide very precise images of tissue and organs.
  • Used in diagnosing and treating Cancer patients.
  • Reveals internal motions such as heart beat and blood flow.
  • Detects and monitors a wide variety of conditions such as heart problems, abdominal disorders, blood vessel problems and pelvic disorders.
  • A safe and effective way to check a baby’s health and development during pregnancy.

A sonographer (a technician who specializes in ultrasound) will position you on an examination table. At this time a gel will be applied to the area being examined. The sonographer will use a small microphone-like device to move lightly over the body part being imaged. The images are viewed on a television monitor and are viewed, taped or photographed.

After the exam, the radiologist will provide your physician with an interpretation of the results of your ultrasound procedure. Your physician can then make a diagnosis and explain the findings.

Charleston Radiologists offers the following Ultrasound services:

  • Abdomen
  • Breast
  • Duplex carotid/vertebral
  • Lower extremity
  • Vascular, arterial and venous
  • Cranial
  • Spinal canal
  • Infant Hip
  • Pelvic
  • Retroperitoneal
  • Scrotal
  • Thyroid
  • Ultrasound needle placements, biopsies, aspirations, injections

Patient Preparation

Abdominal, Spleen, Pancreas or Gallbladder Ultrasound:

Do not eat or drink anything after midnight the day before your scheduled exam.

Pelvic, OB or GYN Ultrasound:

  • It is essential to have an extremely full bladder for a pelvic ultrasound (whether you are pregnant or not) in order to avoid delays in the exam and possible rescheduling.
  • Drink four 8 oz. glasses of fluid one hour prior to the scheduled exam (water is preferred). Try not to go to the bathroom during this time, but if you must go, go only enough to relieve the discomfort.