Prepare for an Ultrasound (Sonography)

Ultrasound imaging, also called ultrasound scanning or sonography, involves exposing part of the body to high-frequency sound waves to produce pictures of the inside of the body.

Patient Safety Tips Prior to a Diagnostic Exam in Radiology

  • Please let us know if you have any allergies or adverse reactions to medications.
  • Please leave your valuables at home or in your room in the hospital.
  • Please let us now if you need interpreting services, this can be arranged for you.

Preparation for the Exam

  • The technologist will verify your identification and exam requested.
  • The preparation for this test will depend on the type of ultrasound procedure your doctor has ordered. Some preparations include drinking a quart of water before the test to obtain better images. Your doctor will instruct you.
  • If you are having a biopsy, you will be asked to not eat or drink anything past midnight the night before the exam. Your doctor will instruct you.

During the Exam

  • The duration of the exam will vary, but the average is about 30-60 minutes.
  • The technologist will position you on the exam table, and give you instructions.
  • You will have the opportunity to ask the technologists questions.
  • A small amount of water-soluble gel is applied to the skin over the area to be examined.
  • A hand-held instrument is placed against the gel on your body. This instrument will be moved across the area being examined.

After the Exam

  • If you are going home, you may resume normal activities.

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