Ultrasound is the term used for high-frequency soundwaves. Ultrasound examinations use these sound waves to produce a picture or image onto a screen showing the inside of your body. An ultrasound is carried out by a trained health professional (sonographer, radiologist or sonologist).
ultrasound is an examination of the female pelvis. It helps to see if there is any abnormality in the uterus (womb), cervix (the neck of the womb), endometrium (lining of the womb), fallopian tubes, ovaries, bladder, or the pelvic cavity. It looks at the pelvic organs from inside the using a special smooth, thin, handheld device called a transducer. This differs from an abdominal ultrasound, which uses a warm water-based clear gel applied to the skin of the abdomen and the transducer is moved gently across the pelvic area.
All ultrasound transducers transmit high-frequency sound waves, and these are reflected from different soft tissue, structures, or parts in the body in different ways. These sound waves are converted to electrical impulses that produce a moving image on a screen.
An ultrasound has many advantages. It is painless and does not involve radiation, which means it is very safe. The high-frequency sound waves ensure images show very high detail, capable of looking at the very tiniest parts of the body. A health professional will be there with you, and you have the opportunity to communicate any concerns you have.
Why would my doctor refer me to have this procedure?
The test is requested by your doctor if you have symptoms of pelvic pain or abnormal bleeding, or to check for fibroids / tumours of the uterus, polyps (areas of thickening of the lining of the uterus), ovarian cysts or tumors, infertility, or assessment of early pregnancy.
How do I prepare for a transvaginal ultrasound?
No preparation is required. You will be asked to go to the toilet and empty your bladder before the test being carried out. If you are having a period, the examination can still be carried out and it is often an advantage when assessing some gynaecological problems. If you are wearing a tampon, it will need to be removed. Before having the test, you might be asked to sign a consent form. At all times, a patientâ€™s dignity and privacy is protected during the examination.