An Ultrasound uses high frequency sound waves, which are bounced back from parts of the body to produce black and white images. Modern ultrasound equipment shows details in real time, with live images being shown on screen, as opposed to static images produced by procedures such as x-rays.
Ultrasound examinations can be performed on most parts of the body and provide excellent information about a variety of conditions, from pregnancy to gall stones, varicose veins and even muscle tears. Ultrasound is particularly useful in pregnancy as there are no known harmful effects from its diagnostic use.
At SRG we have modern, digital equipment which our trained sonographers use to provide real-time imaging. We also have Radiologist on site at all times to report images as they are performed, with ultrasound scans usually being interpreted and reported within the hour.
An ultrasound examination will normally take 30 minutes.
Preparation for your Ultrasound Scan
You will need to make an appointment for this examination. Depending on the type of ultrasound examination your doctor has requested, you may be asked to fast from food or fluids. Some examinations require you to drink significant amounts of water prior to arriving to ensure that your bladder is full. Please see the table below for specific requirements. Our reception staff will advise you of the necessary preparation for your ultrasound at the time of booking your appointment.
Depending on the procedure, you may be required to change into a gown. Our staff will advise you prior to your exam.
Pelvis, Kidney and Bladder
Empty bladder for the 1 ½ hours prior to your examination and then drink 1 litre of fluid. Do not empty bladder again until after the procedure.
Do not eat nor drink anything for 6 hours prior to your ultrasound exam. You may drink water only.
Musculoskeletal / Vascular
No preparation necessary.
Obstetric – up to 12 weeks
If you are over 10 weeks pregnant, no preparation is necessary. For pregnancies up to and including 10 weeks, empty bladder for the 1 ½ hours prior to your examination and then drink 1 litre of fluid. Do not empty bladder again until after the procedure.
Please note that we do not offer a nuchal translucency service, nor do we offer second and third trimester pregnancy scans
During the Procedure
During an ultrasound examination the Sonographer (a technologist trained in ultrasound imaging) uses a probe on the surface of the skin. Images are produced in real-time and are displayed on the Sonographer’s screen as they perform the examination. They provide information about the structure of various organs, muscles, tendons and ligaments. In some cases, one of our doctors will accompany the Sonographer during the procedure.
You are welcome to have a family member or support person accompany you while you have your ultrasound scan. If required, we are able to provide a chaperone. Please contact our reception staff by phone on 0800 774 9729 to arrange this.
After the Procedure
Following your ultrasound examination, images of the scan will be electronically sent to one of our doctors for interpretation. Your doctor will also be able to view these images from their clinic.
If your doctor has specified it on your referral, you may be given your films or a CD to take away with you. Our Radiologist’s report will be sent to your doctor electronically. To learn how to open the images on the CD, visit our Images on Disc page.
- Previous films and CDs may be of use to our Radiologists when they are interpreting your ultrasound scan. Please bring these with you to your appointment.
- Park in the basement car parks marked ‘Orthopaedics & Radiology’, otherwise you may be towed. Read our Parking and Transportation page for more information.
- We are located in Building C of Ascot Office Park. Take the lift to level 2 for Ultrasound examinations.
- Related pages: Autologous Blood Injections, Ultrasound-guided steroid injections, Parking and Transportation, Images on Disc