What Is an Ultrasound Test?

Ultrasound images help in the diagnosis of a wide range of diseases and conditions, including stomach problems. During an ultrasound test, high-frequency sound waves, inaudible to the human ear, are transmitted through body tissues using an instrument called a transducer, which transmits the information to a computer that displays the information on a monitor..

What Digestive System Conditions Can Ultrasound Diagnose?

Ultrasound may be used to detect:

  • Cysts or abnormal growths in the liver, spleen, or pancreas
  • Abnormal enlargement of the spleen Cancer of the liver
  • Gallstones

What Happens During an Ultrasound Test?

Generally, no special preparation is needed for an ultrasound test. Depending on the type of test, you may need to drink fluid before the ultrasound examination.

During the Test

  • You will lie on a padded examination table.
  • A specially trained technologist will perform the test.
  • A small amount of water-soluble gel is applied to the skin over the area to be examined. The gel does not harm your skin and will be wiped off after the test.
  • A wand-like device called a transducer is gently applied against the skin.
  • You may be asked to hold your breath briefly several times.
  • The ultrasound test takes several minutes to complete.
  • A board-certified radiologist will interpret the test results.