Ultrasounds are one of the best diagnostic tools in a doctor’s arsenal for organ and soft tissue issues. Whether it’s getting a closer look at your baby, or pinpointing abnormalities in your organs, Dr. Khadra M. Osman, gynecologist at Fort Lauderdale Women Care in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, turn to this noninvasive and painless procedure first to track your health on the inside.
An ultrasound is a diagnostic tool that uses sonography, or sound waves, to capture imaging of the inner workings of your body. During an ultrasound, Dr. Sanches or Dr. Osman uses an instrument called a transducer to direct high-frequency sound in a specific area. The resulting echo from these sound waves creates an image that determines the size, shape, and consistency of soft tissues and organs in your body.
The information, or bounceback, that an ultrasound produces creates an image on a computer screen in real time, which specialists can read or interpret to diagnose many different conditions.
An ultrasound is one of the first diagnostic tools a gynecologist turns to gain more information on the following:
Ultrasounds typically create the first images you’ll have of your unborn baby and can reveal a lot about your pregnancy, such as when the baby is due, how many babies there are, and the sex of your baby. Ultrasounds also provide great screening tools for abnormalities, the baby’s position, congenital disabilities, ectopic pregnancies, and more.
Ultrasounds provide the first line in diagnosing a host of issues that may arise in your internal organs, including your:
While ultrasounds are a great tool for initially spotting problems, or confirming that everything is functioning normally, they do have limitations, and the doctors may recommend further, more detailed, testing to confirm a diagnosis.
Depending on which area Dr. Osman or Dr. Sanches would like to look at, ultrasounds are typically performed on top of your skin. First, you are prepped for the ultrasound with a robe so that the doctors can easily access the right region. Once you are ready, either Dr. Osman or Dr. Sanches applies a soft gel to your skin and rolls a wand over the area. The procedure usually takes less than an hour.
In some cases, your gynecologist may need to perform a transvaginal ultrasound, which is done by inserting a wand into your vagina. This can also be carried out rectally for issues to do with that part of your body.
There’s virtually no risk associated with ultrasounds, which don’t require any needles, incisions, or radiation. The procedure itself is painless, and you’ll feel nothing while it’s being performed.