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Ultrasound

An ultrasound examination is an imaging technique that uses sound waves to view soft-tissue organs within the body. An ultrasound uses high frequency sound waves to visualize organs within the body. High frequency sound waves (not audible to the human ear) are sent into the body, reflected back to the ultrasound camera to produce an image composed of various shades of grey.

Our expert staff specialists, employing ultrasound equipment and techniques, ensure that we provide you with the best diagnostic assessment to support you and your doctor.

There are no known side effects from ultrasound and this is why it is an excellent tool to image the fetus. Ultrasound has many applications, it can be used for general body imaging, obstetrical and gynecological exams, small part, pediatric, musculoskeletal examinations, interrogation of vasculature  and it aids in biopsy procedures

Click here to view the ultrasound brochure.

Location and Contact Information

To make an ultrasound appointment at the Markham site, please visit the Make an Appointment page.

To make an ultrasound appointment at the Uxbridge site, please call 905 852 9771 ext. 5249.

Markham Site

We suggest parking in the main hospital parking lot, opposite the Link Lobby Entrance and Medical Office Building, when visiting diagnostic services.

Please go to Patient Registration on the second floor in Building A (main lobby)  to register for your appointment  before you are directed to the Ultrasound waiting room. Please arrive at registration 15 minutes prior to your appointment time.

Uxbridge Site

Diagnostic services is located in Uxbridge Cottage Hospital – 4 Campbell Drive, Uxbridge.

For more information on parking at the Markham or Uxbridge sites, please click here.

Care Providers

The technologist who interprets and conducts this test is called a sonographer and the physician who reports the study is called a radiologist.

All of the sonographers who work at Markham Stouffville Hospital have completed qualifying exams and are registered  &/or Sonography Canada with the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers (RDMS) and the Canadian Association of Registered Diagnostic Ultrasound Professionals (CARDUP).

The following ultrasounds are available through the ultrasound department:

  • Abdominal ultrasound (includes renal ultrasound)
  • Gynecological ultrasound
  • Interventional procedures (biopsies) (Markham site only)
  • Musculoskeletal ultrasound
  • Obstetrical ultrasound
  • Renal ultrasound (kidney and bladder)
  • Pediatric ultrasound
  • Small part ultrasound (breast, thyroid, etc.)
  • Vascular ultrasound

What You Should Know

Before Your Visit

Please arrive 15minutes before your test to register at Patient Registration. Please bring your health card and your requisition (if your doctor has provided you with one).

Obstetrical Ultrasound

Before 12 weeks gestation: Finish drinking  four 8 oz. (or 1 L) glasses of water one hour before your appointment. Do not urinate.

After 12 week’s gestation: no special preparation is required.

Renal Ultrasound

Finish drinking two 8 oz. (or .5L) glasses of water one hour before your appointment. Do not urinate.

Abdominal Ultrasound

Do not eat or drink for eight hours before your appointment (except the minimum drink needed to take medications).

For under three years of age: they may eat and drink as usual.

If you have diabetes please let the scheduling clerk know to schedule a morning appointment.

Pelvic Ultrasound

Finish drinking four 8 oz. (or 1 L) glasses of water one hour before your appointment. Do not urinate.

Abdominal Ultrasound & Pelvic Ultrasound

Do not eat for eight hours before your appointment. Finish drinking four 8 oz. (or 1 L) glasses of water one hour before your appointment. Do not urinate.

During Your Visit

An ultrasound study begins by applying a water-soluble gel to the appropriate part of the body, enabling transmission of sound waves from a transducer (or camera) as it moves across the patient’s skin.  Reflected sound waves return to the transducer & an image is created based on the speed of the returning sound as it travels through the body. 

After an obstetrical ultrasound is complete, the sonographer will invite family members in to view the ultrasound images of the baby.

After Your Visit

There are no specific instructions for after your ultrasound. You may purchase a CD of your obstetrical ultrasound which includes images of your baby  for $10.00 (cash only). 

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the risks with having an ultrasound?

An ultrasound is a very safe way to get a clear image of soft tissues. It is a diagnostic tool which does not use ionizing radiation which is why it is the preferred tool for monitoring pregnancy.

Is an ultrasound painful?

No, there is little to no pain associated with having an ultrasound. It may be mildly uncomfortable during the in some instances (ie:  full bladder)  but it should not be painful.l.

Additional Resources

The Medical Imaging Team resources for patients and health care professionals - imagingteam.ca

Radiology information resources - radiologyinfo.org/