Exploring Common Reasons to Get an Ultrasound (Other Than Pregnancy)
Updated: Mar 15
Ultrasounds are performed for many reasons, and one of the most common is for pregnancy. That being said, it helps to understand the other reasons ultrasounds are performed in case you come down with a medical issue that an ultrasound can help to diagnose. With that in mind, here are a few reasons you may want to consider getting an ultrasound -- even if you're not pregnant.
First, it should come as no surprise that a wide range of abdominal issues can be diagnosed with the help of ultrasound technology. That being said, if you're experiencing pain and other uncomfortable chronic issues, it may be time to get one scheduled.
"If you have belly pain, bloating or swelling, an abdominal ultrasound can help your doctor figure out why. The images it creates let your doctor see your kidneys, liver, gallbladder, pancreas, spleen, and the blood vessels in your abdomen. Also, new ultrasound technology makes it easier to get abdominal images when someone is obese or difficult to scan for other reasons. Technicians now can control the depth of the ultrasound signal so the scans produce better-quality images for the doctor to examine," writes Chris Illiades on Healthgrades.
Blood Vessel Issues
What may be a bit more surprising are the benefits ultrasound technology has when it comes to determining blood vessel issues. A doppler ultrasound can use sound waves to provide photos of blood passing through your arteries and veins, potentially detecting a blood clot or other circulatory system blockage.
Finally, remember that womens healthcare professionals, OBGYN specialists, and general health practitioners may recommend an ultrasound when a biopsy is necessary. This means that a tissue sample is taken and examined underneath a microscope. In this sense, the ultrasound acts as a guide and can help the doctor determine where the best place for a tissue sample is.
Ultimately, these are some other common reasons patients get ultrasounds. However, pregnancy remains among the most common and essential reasons they're performed. About 6.7 million women ages 15 to 44 have impaired fecundity (impaired ability to get pregnant or carry a baby to term), but regardless of your fertility status, it's important to understand the medical reasons ultrasounds are performed. For more information about womens health care, contact WomanCare PC.