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When a vascular ultrasound procedure is undertaken, an examination of the body's blood circulation can be undertaken in a non-invasive way. An ultrasound approach, which is sometimes referred to as a duplex study, means that an evaluation of a patients arteries and veins can be made in nearly every part of the body. This includes blood vessels that lie in traditionally difficult-to-assess places like the neck, the abdomen and the limbs.
During this sort of examination, sound waves are transmitted directly into the soft tissues of the area being looked at. Just like a common prenatal ultrasound examination, these sound waves reflect off certain tissues to produce an image. In the case of a vascular ultrasound, it is the blood cells flowing within the patient's blood vessels which can be looked at by calibrating the ultrasound machine in a particular way. The resulting image is displayed on a computer screen, and this can be recorded and shared with other health care professionals if needed. Why is the technique becoming so common in the Western world?
Blood Flow Rates
A vascular ultrasound procedure allows medical professionals to assess the rate of blood flow. This is done by looking at the speed of the sound waves returning to the device that is being used. In other words, an ultrasound machine can determine the speed of blood flow in any given vessel, thereby allowing for an assessment to be made about a potential narrowing or blockage, usually because the blood flow rate increases when it is passing through too narrow a pinch point.
Because it is a procedure offered from outside of the body, a vascular ultrasound needs no needles or any other form of anaesthetics. Furthermore, no contrast dye is needed to go into the bloodstream in order to measure flow rates. In fact, the process does not require any radiation, either, something that is needed with other techniques used for assessing blood systems. This puts patients kidneys under less stress following an examination.
Since ultrasound systems have been around for a long time, they have been developed into small and convenient systems. A vascular ultrasound could be conducted in any clinic in the country without the need to go to a large hospital. It is also a good deal cheaper and easier than using CAT scan technology or MRI machines.
Vascular ultrasounds are good at detecting a range of problems. Deep vein thrombosis, abdominal aortic aneurysms and vascular disease are all frequently spotted at an early stage using this method.Share