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
What You Should Know
- Before your visit
Please click here to view the general patient preparation instructions form and look for the kind of ultrasound you are having.
Click here to view the ultrasound brochure and more instructions and preparations.
- During your visit
An ultrasound study begins by applying a water-soluble gel to the area of the body being scanned. This gel allows permits the sound waves to be “seen” as they travel from the transducer (or probe) through the body tissue, while this probe is passed along the skin. The reflected sound waves return to the transducer and an image is created based on the speed of the returning sound waves as they travel through the body.
For obstetrical examinations, the sonographer must first ensure all imaging is thorough and without distractions, before the family may be invited in to view the ultrasound images of the baby. We appreciate these exciting times and want our patients to share this special experience with their loved ones after the diagnostic examination has been completed. You may purchase a CD of your obstetrical ultrasound which includes images of your baby for $10.00 (cash only).
- Care providers
The ultrasound examination will be performed by a technologist who is specialized in ultrasound imaging and is more formally known as a sonographer. All of the sonographers who work at Markham Stouffville Hospital have completed qualifying exams and are registered with Sonography Canada (CRS) and/or the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers (RDMS). To learn more about this health professional see Sonography canada.ca - Sonographers are medical professionals
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 visit in some instances but it should not be painful (e.g. when your bladder is full and you have to hold off from peeing before imaging is completed).