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What does an abdominal (liver, gallbladder) ultrasound show?

Ultrasound tests use sound waves to create images of the internal organs. Abdominal ultrasounds are frequently ordered to evaluate the organs of the abdomen which include the liver, gallbladder, pancreas, kidneys, spleen, and vessels such as the aorta and IVC Below are some common indications for an abdominal ultrasound.

  • Look for liver cirrhosis. infection and tumors.
  • Evaluate the gallbladder for stones. inflammation (cholecystitis) for polyps or tumors of the gallbladder that may cause abdominal pain.
  • Evaluate parts of the pancreas that are seen by ultrasound for large tumors and inflammation.
  • Look for kidney stones. blockages (hydronephrosis), tumors, cysts which can cause abdominal pain.
  • Look for an enlarged spleen. tumors or cysts of the spleen.
  • Rule out abdominal aortic aneurysms (ballooning of the aorta).
  • Check for fluid in the abdomen which can be seen in cirrhosis, infection or injury.
  • Abdominal ultrasounds are also used to look for pyloric stenosis in young infants (causes projectile vomiting). It is used as a guide to biopsy tumors of the liver, kidneys and other nearby tissues.

    Below is a brief outline of the procedure .

    1. You

      will be asked to fast for at least 6 hours (so the gallbladder is full - it empties if you eat before the test and makes it very hard to evaluate).

    2. After you sign in, you'll be taken to the ultrasound room.
    3. An ultrasound technician will perform the test.
    4. Once you enter the room, you will lie down on a bed/gurney.
    5. The technologist will ask you to lift up your clothing, exposing your stomach.
    6. He or she will place a a warmed gel solution over the skin.
    7. The technologist will use an ultrasound probe and glide it over your abdomen while taking pictures.
    8. You may be asked to sit up for a part of the test to get better images of the gallbladder or kidneys.
    9. The technologist may ask the Radiologist doctor to review the scan before you leave.
    10. An official report is generated by the doctor in about 24-48 hours.

    If you are insured abdominal ultrasounds are covered. However, for uninsured patients these tests can be quite expensive. You can expect to pay anywhere between $250 and $800 for this test.

    Have you had an Abdominal ultrasound? What was it like? Please leave your comments below

    Category: Forex

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