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Ultrasound is a noninvasive imaging test that shows structures inside your body using high-intensity sound waves. Healthcare providers use ultrasound exams for several purposes, including during pregnancy, for diagnosing conditions and for image guidance during certain procedures.
Ultrasound (also called sonography or ultrasonography) is a noninvasive imaging test. An ultrasound picture is called a sonogram. Ultrasound uses high-frequency sound waves to create real-time pictures or video of internal organs or other soft tissues, such as blood vessels.
Preparation for an ultrasound varies depending on what body part you’ll have scanned. Your provider may ask you to remove certain pieces of clothes or change into a hospital gown.
Ultrasounds that involve applying the transducer (probe) over your skin (not in your body), follow these general steps:
Providers sometimes use ultrasound to perform certain procedures precisely. A common use of ultrasound is to guide needle placement to sample fluid or tissue from:
Examples of other procedures that may require ultrasound guidance include: