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Departments / ProgramsUltrasound

Almonte General Hospital Ultrasound Services

What is an Ultrasound?

During an ultrasound procedure, equipment sends sound - at a frequency that cannot be heard by the human ear - into specific parts of the body. The sound reflects back at different frequencies, which are analyzed by a computer and turned into an image of the part of the body being examined.

Ultrasound tests are usually carried out as part of obstetrical, gynecological and abdominal examinations or as examinations of small body parts, such as the breast or thyroid gland. Patients who need echocardiograms, or “heart ultrasounds” are able to have them done at the Almonte General Hospital. The Hospital’s Registered Echocardiographer/Ultrasonographer and Vascular Technologist can also perform carotid dopplers, or ultrasounds of the carotid and vertebral arteries.

After an ultrasound test, the ultrasonographer views the image, marks areas of it that may indicate potential abnormalities, and sends it to a radiologist, who reads it and make a diagnosis. Some ultrasound images can also be viewed on videotape.

If You Need an Ultrasound

If you require an ultrasound examination you will have a requisition form from your doctor.

Unless you are sent from the Emergency Department, you must have an appointment, which is usually arranged by your doctor’s office. If you have been asked to book the appointment yourself, please call 256-2514, extension 2114 to arrange the appointment.

When you arrive, please report to the Hospital Admission Office in the Almonte General Hospital lobby. Be prepared to present your Health Card and your blue Almonte General Hospital card (if you do not have a Hospital card you will be given one when you check in).

If you are unable to keep your appointment, notify the Ultrasound department as soon as possible – preferably 24 hours in advance.

An ultrasound is a test that uses sound waves, not X-rays. For the test you will be asked to lie down on a bed while a transducer (which looks like a small microphone) is passed over the area of your body being examined, using a gel which will feel cool but does not cause discomfort.

Preparing for an Abdominal Examination (liver, aorta, pancreas, spleen, gallbladder, kidneys)

Do not eat or drink after midnight the night before your examination. Do not smoke or chew gum. If you need to take medication, take it with a small amount of water. If you are an insulin-dependent diabetic and are asked to miss breakfast, take half your normal dose of insulin. If you have to miss any other meal, contact your doctor for further instructions.

Preparing for an Abdominal and Pelvic Examination

Do not eat. Finish drinking 40 oz. of clear fluid (preferably water) one hour before your appointment time. Do not empty your bladder after drinking the water until after your test. If your bladder becomes too uncomfortable, you may pass a small amount of urine to relieve the pressure. If your bladder is not full at the time of your test you may have to reschedule.

If you need to take medication, take it with a small amount of water. If you are an insulin-dependent diabetic and are asked to miss breakfast, take half your normal dose of insulin. If you have to miss any other meal, contact your doctor for further instructions.

Preparing for an Obstetric or Pelvic Examination

This test can only be done if the bladder if full. Eat normally. Finish drinking 40 oz. of clear fluid (preferably water) one hour before your appointment time. Do not empty your bladder after drinking the water until after your test. If your bladder becomes too uncomfortable, you may pass a small amount of urine to relieve the pressure. If your bladder is not full at the time of your test you may have to reschedule.

Expectant mothers who undergo an ultrasound can purchase a still image of an ultrasound of their baby for a $10 fee.

All Other Ultrasound Tests

There are no restrictions on food or drink.

After the Test

Return to your normal diet and (if applicable) insulin routine.

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