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Understanding Ultrasound Breast Screening Techniques

Ultrasound is the safest and the widely used evaluation method to diagnose conditions relating to foetal growth, blood flow to the heart, identification of cancerous cells and problems in the internal organs like heart, liver, abdomen and kidney. The image produced during the ultrasound is called sonogram. Doctors refer their patients for ultrasound scan in Chennai for diagnosis of various diseases. The procedure is non-invasive, painless and quick. Ultrasound scan is used to determine the organs contained in the abdomen. Echocardiograms are used to assess the heart and its functioning and it is normally taken after a person suffers from a heart attack. The movement of the valves are examined in the scan. The ultrasound scan is conducted on the woman’s pelvis area.

Also Read : Why Do You Need A Yearly Medical Check-Up?

In breast ultrasound, sound waves are used to examine the inside of the breasts. It gives a complete analysis of breast problems. The doctor will get an idea of how well the blood flows in the breast area. Breast ultrasound is recommended when a mammogram does not show changes. The transducer is more like a wand that runs on the skin gives images of the breasts. The sound waves are sent through the transducer that bounces back from your breast tissue. The sound waves are not audible. The transducer picks up the sound and bounces back. The image is formed on the screen for evaluation.

Adding another device called the Doppler probe, the sinologists will be able to hear blood flowing through the vessels. It can also determine the direction of the flow. If there is no sound, it means that there is a block. Since there is no radiation, the scan is safe on pregnant ladies as well. There is no use of dye and this makes it safer.

Candidates for breast ultrasound
When a problem is spotted in a physical examination or mammogram, the doctor recommends breast ultrasound to check if the identified cyst contains fluid or solid tumour. Breast ultrasound may not necessarily be recommended for patients with breast cancer. Sometimes when early signs of cancer are missed, ultrasound can catch it precisely. It is used for dense breast tissues, particularly for women below 25 years of age, where a mammogram does not yield the desired results. Ultrasound is suggestive for pregnant women as mammography uses radiotracers.

Risks involved in breast ultrasound
Breast ultrasound is safe and does not involve any risk. It is free from radiation and hence is safe on pregnant women. Though, there are chances that breast ultrasound may not detect small lumps that are found in mammography. Another disadvantage is related to obese women who have large breasts that make the detection process less accurate. Moreover, the risks depend on the health condition of the individual. Talk with your doctor for concerns on the ultrasound procedures. After the procedure is complete, take special care as recommended by your healthcare professional; this again varies from one patient to another.

Side effects of breast ultrasound
There are no potential complications during or after the breast ultrasound is taken. It is a routine process and is safe on pregnant women too. The process is painless and no serious side effects are associated with the scan.

General Ultrasound Imaging
The imaging process is absolutely safe on the patient and is painless. The component involves a small transducer called the probe that is placed on the skin after applying a gel. The probe collects the sound and returns it to the computer. These sound waves create images. The examination does not use radiations like in the case of X Rays. The patients are safe from any kind of radiation. The images are captured real time and structure of the body along with the movements is registered. The blood flow is also recorded. The process is non-invasive and is used to diagnose a host of medical conditions.

Ultrasound is superior to conventional scans as it gives a three dimensional formatting of the sound wave data resulting in 3D images. The Doppler ultrasound is also part of the scan examinations. It is called the Colour Doppler ultrasonography. The blood flow in the body is evaluated using this technique. Doppler ultrasound can be divided into three types:

  • The technique used to convert Doppler measures into a range of colours to show the direction and the speed of the blood flow via the vessels.
  • Power Doppler is the latest technique that is sensitive in comparison with colour Doppler and can give a better representation of the blood flow, even when it is minimal. Though one drawback is that it does not indicate the blood flow direction which is important for some conditions.
  • Spectral Doppler is used to measure the blood flow graphically in terms of distance travel in unit time instead of a colour picture. The conversion of blood flow information into sound is heard with the heartbeat.

Approach the doctor with the report for further course of action.

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