What’s Detected During an Ultrasound Exam?


Ultrasound, or sonography, is a versatile and effective technology used to diagnose a broad range of medical conditions and inform treatment plans. The advantages of an ultrasound exam include:

  • It’s safe – Ultrasound does not use ionizing radiation
  • It is minimally invasive – No needles or injections are usually required
  • It produces imagery in real time – Ultrasound is an effective guide for needle biopsies
  • It reveals a clear image of soft tissue – Unlike x-ray images, which typically do not

Ultrasound technology can be used to examine virtually every area of the body, including the abdomen, circulatory system and reproductive organs and to perform infertility and gynecologic evaluations.

The expert detective: Abdominal ultrasound

Using sound waves to produce pictures of the structures within the upper abdomen, abdominal ultrasound can reveal abnormalities in some of the most important organs in the body. This technology is used to:

  • Find the cause of abdominal pain
  • Reveal the source of kidney infections
  • Diagnose and monitor tumors and cancers
  • Diagnose or treat ascites (the build-up of fluid in the space between the lining of the abdomen and abdominal organs)
  • Learn why an abdominal organ is swelling
  • Look for damage after an injury
  • Detect stones in the gallbladder or kidney
  • Look for the cause of abnormal blood tests of the liver or kidney
  • Help determine the cause of a fever

Sonograms for moms and babies

An essential technology for physicians and parents alike, ultrasound exams may be used during the early stages of pregnancy to:

  • Determine conception and due dates
  • Detect twins or multiple pregnancies
  • Rule out ectopic pregnancies (when an embryo implants somewhere other than the uterus, such as in one of the fallopian tubes)

Obstetric ultrasound is invaluable in monitoring the growth and health of the fetus, from the internal organs to the outer extremities. Ultrasound can also determine the sex of the baby midway through a pregnancy. And closer to delivery, doctors can use ultrasound to estimate the size of the baby.

Vascular ultrasound helps keep things circulating

Evaluating the body’s circulatory system is crucial to identifying blockages and detecting dangerous blood clots. Vascular ultrasound is used to:

  • Monitor blood flow throughout the body
  • Locate and identify plaque buildup in the veins
  • Detect blood clots (deep venous thrombosis in major veins of the legs or arms
  • Determine if people are good candidates for procedures like angioplasty
  • Evaluate the success of procedures that graft or bypass blood vessels
  • Detect enlarged arteries (aneurysm)
  • Determine the source and severity of varicose veins

Leading edge ultrasound in Anchorage

From evaluating and monitoring pregnancies to detecting medical problems, the team at Alaska Family Sonograms is wholly dedicated to providing superior quality ultrasound imaging. Our skilled sonographers use some of the most advanced technology available to find the source of your medical problem, but rest assured, you’ll be treated like family. During your exam, we’ll make sure you feel at ease, inform you every step of the way and answer all your questions.

For more information about advanced ultrasound care from the heart, call 907-885-0390 or click here to schedule your appointment.