Dealing With Medical Emergencies and Conditions

Dealing With Medical Emergencies and Conditions

What to Expect Before, During, and After a Vascular Ultrasound Exam

by Vernon Foster

When your doctor tells you to book an appointment for a vascular examination, you might think that something is wrong with your blood vessels. However, it is usually not the case. Usually, a physician wants to find out if your vessels are working correctly as far as blood circulation is concerned. A vascular examination involves an ultrasound machine that helps locate and identify possible issues in blood vessels. Therefore, like any other medical exam, it is crucial to know what to expect before, during, and after a vascular ultrasound examination. 

Before Vascular Ultrasound Exam — One thing you must understand is that vascular ultrasound can examine blood vessels in any part of the body. It includes blood vessels in the heart, kidneys, liver, spleen, and extremities. For examination of abdominal veins and arteries, it is essential not to drink, eat, or smoke for at least six to eight hours before the procedure. Food and drinks lingering in the abdominal section can prevent clear visualization of the vessels in question. Consequently, it leads to inaccurate results, diagnosis, and treatment. However, no preparation is required for vascular ultrasound examinations targeting vessels in the extremities and the neck region. Notably, you might need to wear a low collar for easy access to the neck region.

During Vascular Ultrasound Exam — A vascular ultrasound procedure for the arms or legs only requires you to fold your sleeves or trousers. However, you might have to change into a gown for abdominal ultrasound examinations. Additionally, you may be required to remove accessories, such as jewellery and watches. Once ready, an ultrasound technician asks you to lay on your back and will apply a water-soluble gel on the body part being examined. After that, they place a transducer on the body part and begin taking images. You may also be asked to change positions, but it depends on the type of vascular ultrasound examination. For instance, you have to lay on your side if an ultrasound exam targets the kidney. While the exam might feel uncomfortable at times, the results must be accurate for correct diagnosis and treatment.

After Vascular Ultrasound Exam — Once a vascular ultrasound exam is complete, a sonographer wipes away the water-based gel and asks you to wait for the development of ultrasound images and interpretation of results by a physician. Notably, a physician's job is to create a final report based on the findings of vascular ultrasound images and send it to your doctor. Most importantly, accurate diagnosis depends on a sonographer's and interpreting physician's experience. Any mistakes at both stations result in the wrong treatment.


About Me

Dealing With Medical Emergencies and Conditions

Hello, my name is Peter and I live in Western Australia with my wife on our pet dogs. This is my blog which details how to deal with various medical emergencies and other conditions. Last year, several friends and members of my family suffered from various different kinds of medical problems. Some of them, such as my uncle had to be rushed to the hospital for immediate treatment that saved his life. Lots of my friends had minor problems which had a big impact on the quality of their lives. I take an active interest in first-aid and other medical matters so I decided to start this blog.