Medical technology has come a long way, and vascular ultrasound procedures are clear testaments. In the past, vascular surgeons had to insert probes inside arteries and veins to inspect possible clots or damage to the vessels. Today, a vascular examination is anything but intrusive thanks to ultrasound technology. The process is much faster and more comfortable for all patients regardless of age. However, many people do not understand what vascular ultrasound entails. This article highlights the most common and frequently asked questions regarding vascular ultrasound. Read on.
What Medical Issues Does Vascular Ultrasound Examine?
It is arguably the first question that comes to mind when you come across the term vascular ultrasound. Ideally, vascular ultrasound is prescribed in cases involving suspected blood flow issues along the vessel. Some of the most common problems that a vascular ultrasound will examine are deep vein thrombosis (DVT), arterial blood clot, narrowing of blood vessels and deterioration of blood vessel walls. The images captured allow doctors to gauge the severity of the problem and prescribe the best course of action immediately. Vascular ultrasound is particularly useful for vessel problems that have progressively worsened but are not necessarily life-threatening.
How Long Do Vascular Ultrasound Results Take?
Waiting for the results of a medical procedure can be daunting. Some tests can take up to a few minutes while others can take months. However, vascular ultrasound procedures do not take long. Once a lab technician captures the desired image, the results are presented to a doctor for interpretation, which can take a few minutes, especially for a healthy vascular system. However, the review and interpretation process can take longer when dealing with complex blood vessel conditions. Ultimately, the waiting period for vascular ultrasound results depends on the availability of a qualified radiologist.
Are Meals Allowed Before a Vascular Ultrasound Procedure?
Most patients understand that whatever they eat or drink should be controlled before a major medical procedure. However, do the same restrictions apply before a vascular ultrasound test? According to vascular specialists, restriction on meals and drinks depends on the area being scanned. For instance, you should not drink or eat anything four to six hours before vascular ultrasound around the abdominal area. This reduces the levels of abdominal bowel gas, thereby guaranteeing better quality ultrasound images. Conversely, these restrictions do not apply for vascular ultrasound targeting the arms, legs or neck region.
For more information about vascular ultrasounds, talk to your doctor.