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What is Ultrasound
An ultrasound scan (USS) examination allows investigation of the inside part of the body using high frequency sound waves that are reflected as echoes and form a picture on the TV monitor. Ultrasound is a safe, non-invasive and painless diagnostic technique.

Many parts of the human body, including the pelvic organs (uterus, tubes and ovaries) can be investigated by ultrasound. Abnormalities which may be shown by ultrasound include abnormal thickness of the endometrium (lining of the uterus) fibroids, polyps, ovarian cysts, fluid in the tubes (hydrosalpinx).

Cyclical development of the ovarian follicles and the uterine lining can be assessed accurately during specific days of the menstrual cycle.

Pregnancy can be easily monitored from very early stages by ultrasound scan, and complications such as miscarriage and ectopic pregnancy can be diagnosed.

Abdominal ultrasound
This approach requires a full bladder in order to better visualise the pelvic organs. Some clear gel is put on the lower abdominal skin and a scan probe is moved in various directions and over the area of interest to allow appropriate visualisation of the organs.

Transvaginal ultrasound (internal)
There is no need to have a full bladder when the transvaginal approach is used. The probe is inserted very gently into the vagina and it feels very similar to having an internal gynaecological examination. When performing a transvaginal scan the probe is close to the pelvic organs, so a good view is obtained and the pictures are much clearer. The use of colour Doppler at the same time as a standard transvaginal ultrasound enables the blood flow to the organs to be studied.

Indications for ultrasound in gynaecology

• Suspected ovarian cysts
• Infertility
• Pelvic pain
• Period problems
• Fibroids
• Bleeding after the menopause
• Ovarian cancer screening
• Ovarian reserve screening
• Early pregnancy

There are many companies offering scans ranging from traditional scans through to 3D and 4D scans. For the most part, the staff are not medically trained to deal with complications which may arise when analysing the scans. However, Mr Haddad and Karen Woodcock are both medically trained to perform your ultrasound.

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