Ultrasound uses high-frequency sound waves to create an image of the inside of the body including organs, tissues, and, in pregnant women, a developing fetus. It helps the doctor to diagnose any issues as well as monitor the development of the fetus. Modern ultrasounds can provide detailed 3D and 4D images, and many parents use these to discover the sex of their child. Ultrasounds can also be used to:
The ultrasound technician begins by spreading a gel on the patient’s abdomen which helps to conduct the sound waves. The technician, or sometimes the doctor will rub the transducer wand across the abdomen to produce the sound waves and transmit them into the uterus. The sound waves bounce off bones and tissue inside the body, which is recorded by the transducer and generates black and white images of the uterus and inside of the body.
You should wear loose and comfortable clothing for the ultrasound. You may need to disrobe below the waist and wear a gown for the same. Depending on the purpose of the ultrasound, you may be advised to drink four to six glasses of water in advance of the screening. The exam itself is carried out in an ultrasound room at the doctor’s office or a hospital or clinic. You will need to remain very still throughout the procedure, which normally takes around 30 minutes.
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