What is an ultrasound?
An ultrasound or sonogram, these terms are used interchangeably, uses high-frequency sound waves to produce images of the body. These sound waves that enter the body are emitted from an ultrasound transducer. The waves react with the body tissues and are reflected back to the transducer. The ultrasound machine uses sophisticated computer technology to create an image using the reflected sound beams. There is no harm in using ultrasound for diagnostic purposes. No radiation or magnetic fields are used.

Is certification needed by the technologist to perform an ultrasound exam?
Tristán Radiology Specialists employs only registered or registry-eligible sonographers. The technologists have been through schooling and extensive clinical training to perform the exams with accuracy and skill.

Why is a full bladder needed for gynecological and obstetrical sonograms?
A full bladder is necessary to see structures within the pelvis. The uterus and ovaries sit underneath the bladder. A full bladder allows us to “look through” the bladder and see those organs.

Are family members permitted into the exam room during an obstetrical scan?
During obstetrical sonograms, the number of family members may have to be limited during the exam. Large families will be asked to rotate in and out of the room during the procedure. No small children are permitted without an accompanying adult. This is a medical procedure and the sonographer will need to concentrate on the test being performed.

Why do I need to have a mammogram when I can have a sonogram of my breast?
Mammograms are the best way to image the breast. Ultrasound is insensitive as a screening tool for breast cancer. A sonogram can be performed in conjunction with a mammogram to further evaluate an area of concern. Young women under 30 and adolescents are often referred for an ultrasound, rather than a mammogram, for a palpable lump because of the density of the younger breast.

Is 3-D ultrasound available during obstetrical sonograms?
Three-dimensional ultrasound is used at Tristán Radiology Specialists on a limited basis during the late third trimester, and only when the baby is in an optimal position.

Is videotaping available for obstetrical sonograms?
No. Videotaping of any kind is not permitted during the exam.