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Ultrasound technicians provide valuable health care services

By Laura Isaacs,

When most people think of ultrasound technology, they think of its applications during pregnancy. Though ultrasounds are frequently used to check on the progress and growth of a developing baby, ultrasound technology serves other critical diagnostic functions. Ultrasound technology uses high-frequency sound waves to create images of inside of the body, and these images help doctors identify, analyze and treat a variety of medical conditions.

How is ultrasound technology used?

Ultrasound imaging is a non-invasive procedure, and ultrasound technology is similar to echolocation technologies used by boats and fishermen to "see" below the water's surface. Sound waves bounce back and transmit images of objects, including details like size, shape and consistency. In medical fields, ultrasound technology is used to show sonographers and doctors the body's internal structure and movement.

What are the advancements in ultrasound technology?

While conventional ultrasound technology displays two-dimensional images of the body, 3-D and 4-D images can now be produce through recent improvements to ultrasound technology. 3-D ultrasound produces a three-dimensional image of internal body parts, while 4-D ultrasound can display both three-dimensional images and movement inside the body. Developments in ultrasound technology have also paved the way for new techniques including Doppler ultrasound, which is used to assess blood flow through the body's veins and arteries. Doppler ultrasound technology is similar to Doppler radar used by meteorologists to track weather patterns, and it works my measuring shifts in wavelengths and frequency of sound waves as they reflect back from objects.

Ultrasound technology is essential to the study of the human body, and recent advancements have found critical uses in the medical field.

 

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