Arterial Ultrasound Information
This type of Diagnostic ultrasound requires a physician or provider order prior to performing exam.
Physicians order Arterial Doppler or duplex ultrasounds to evaluate not only the anatomy of the artery itself but also the blood flowing through that artery. Ultrasound can see the interior walls of an artery to determine whether there is narrowing or stricture which limits blood flow. In addition to actually seeing the area of narrowing, Ultrasound can evaluate how the blood flow is being affected through that area of narrowing.
Ultrasounds can be performed on arteries within the abdomen, neck up to the level of the chin, arms and legs. CT and MRI along with other x-ray type procedures are also used in the evaluation of arteries in the body that are not accessible via ultrasound or warrant further testing beyond what ultrasound can offer.
There are quiet and noisy portions of an arterial ultrasound. The sonographer will be evaluating not only the anatomy of the blood vessel, ie. Artery, but also the flow dynamics and physiology of the blood flowing through that artery. Your heartbeat will be audible during the portions of the exam where Doppler is being utilized. Doppler is the technique where sound is created when the ultrasound beam is reflected off the cells within the blood flowing through the blood vessel.
Arterial Ultrasounds are helpful in evaluating for PAD (peripheral artery disease) in the limbs, bypass graft surveillance, carotid artery evaluations, abdominal aortas etc.
All of the images from your ultrasound will be sent to a Radiologist (interpreting physician) for a report to be generated for your referring physician. You will receive the results of your Ultrasound from your referring physician or the provider who ordered this ultrasound to be performed. Please refer back to the physician's office that sent you to obtain results of your ultrasound exams.
Depending on the site where the arteries will be evaluated will determine what the prep for that specific ultrasound will be.
Abdominal Artery Ultrasound: You will need to be Fasting a minimum of 8 hours prior to your exam time. No food or drink is allowed. If you do have to take medicine, please use a small amount of water to wash the pills down but avoid any other types of fluids. You will have the choice of changing into a patient gown or staying dressed but lifting your shirt to allow visualization and access of your abdomen.