Ultrasound, also known as sonography, works by exposing the body to high-frequency sound waves using a tiny transducer (probe) and ultrasound gel. Quick and painless, this imaging method uses sound waves to produce images of the inside of the body. This noninvasive medical diagnostic helps doctors diagnose and treat many medical disorders, including thyroid disease (also called abnormal thyroid). Below, our medical experts are going to discuss the main things you should know about getting a thyroid ultrasound inHammond, Indiana.
What Is the Thyroid Gland?
The thyroid gland is shaped like a butterfly and is located directly above the collar bones in front of the neck. It is one of nine endocrine glands that produce and release hormones into the body. The thyroid gland produces thyroid hormones and helps regulate several bodily processes, including the rate at which the heart beats. Nodules in the thyroid are not uncommon, and they can sometimes be felt on the skin’s surface — these are known as palpable nodules.
Ultrasounds provide accurate insights, and they can be used to detect nodules that cannot be felt. Most of these are benign thyroid tissue regions that pose no health risk, but in some cases, they are actual thyroid tumors that may need further diagnosis or treatment.
Why Are Thyroid Ultrasounds inHammond, Indiana Useful?
A thyroid ultrasound inHammond, Indiana is commonly used to:
- Determine whether a lump in the neck is caused by the thyroid or another structure.
- Examine the appearance of thyroid nodules to see if they are the more common benign nodule, or if they have traits that may require a biopsy.
- Check to see if a thyroid nodule has grown significantly over time.
Because ultrasounds produce real-time images that are constantly updated, they can also be used to help with procedures like needle biopsies. An ultrasound can also be used to guide the placement of a catheter or other drainage device.
How to Prepare for an Ultrasound inHammond, Indiana
You should dress comfortably for your ultrasound exam inHammond, Indiana. You may be asked to remove some clothing and jewelry from the area that is being examined, and you may be asked to wear a gown for the procedure. Besides that, there is no additional preparation required.
How Is an Ultrasound Procedure Performed?
Most ultrasound tests are performed with the patient lying face-up on an examination table that can be tilted or moved, if necessary. A transparent water-based gel is applied to the part of the body being examined to help the transducer make secure contact with the body and minimize air pockets between the transducer and the skin. After that, the ultrasound technologist or radiologist presses the transducer firmly against the skin in different spots. If the transducer is pressed over an area of tenderness, you may feel pressure or slight discomfort. To help the sonographer in examining your thyroid using an ultrasound, you may need to extend your neck at times. If you have neck pain, it’s important to let the technician know so they can help you get into a comfortable posture for the exam.
After the exam, you may be asked to wait while the ultrasound images are processed. A typical ultrasound inHammond, Indiana can be completed in 30 minutes with very little or no pain involved.
What Are the Benefits of Ultrasounds?
- The ultrasound scanning is noninvasive, which means there are no needles or injections necessary.
- An ultrasound exam can be uncomfortable at times, but it most cases, it shouldn’t be painful.
- Ultrasound is more readily available, easier to use, and more affordable than other imaging methods.
- Ultrasound imaging is completely safe and does not involve the use of ionizing radiation.
- Soft tissues that do not show up well on x-ray scans are clearly visible with ultrasound scanning.
- Because ultrasound provides real-time imaging, it is a useful tool for guiding minimally invasive operations such as needle biopsies and aspiration.
Need an Ultrasound inHammond, Indiana? Contact NW Indiana ER & Hospital.
If you have any further questions about what you can expect during your ultrasound exam inHammond, Indiana, our staff is here to help. Please feel free to contact NW Indiana ER & Hospital at (219) 554-9911 to get in touch with one of our experts.
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