We use state-of-the-art ultrasound machines to obtain images and data about what’s happening in your body. Our vascular surgeons use this data to diagnose your condition and make recommendations for treatment.
What is an ultrasound?
An ultrasound machine uses high frequency sound waves to create images of the human body. The technique is non-invasive, meaning that it doesn’t penetrate the patient’s body – and is considered to be very low risk.
Ultrasound technology has its origins early in the 20th century when sonars were used to identify submarines beneath the surface of the ocean. It was first used medically in the 1950s.
The ultrasound operator – known as a sonographer – presses the ultrasound machine’s hand-held camera onto the patient’s skin. A low allergy water-based gel is used to create contact between the camera – also known as a transducer – and the patient’s skin. The images gathered – known as scans – are recorded digitally in the machine for review by our sonographers and vascular surgeons. The images are also stored for future reference.
The ultrasound lets us see anything out of the ordinary in your veins and arteries, such as blockages, aneurysms and signs of disease. We can also measure the flow of blood to assess the health of your blood vessels.
What are veins and arteries?
Arteries are blood vessels which supply blood from the heart to your body. A blocked artery can cause pain, ulcers or even gangrene.
Veins carry blood back to your heart. A clot in a vein can cause Deep Vein Thrombosis or other complications if it dislodges and goes into the lungs.