What does an ultrasound tech do? Before answering the question let us see what ultrasound is all about. Medical ultrasound is also known as medical sonography. It requires the use of ultrasound equipment. This machine produces sound waves of high frequency that bounce off the targeted tissues and organs of the body gathering waves in the process. The bounced sounds cannot be heard but are seen. The equipment collects them and turns them into images. This image could be a snapshot or a real moving image.
An ultrasound tech is a professional who is responsible for operating this equipment and conducting the procedures related to it. They take care of the technical aspects. Doctors have to deal with a number of things. Technicians help them by handling the process of ultrasound so that they are able to concentrate on assessing the overall state of the patients, make diagnoses, carry out different treatments, etc. To stay fresh and valuable in an ultrasound technician career, an ultrasound tech should opt for specialization in the field of ultrasound technology. Ultrasound has many subcategories. Two of the key subcategories are diagnostic ultrasound and therapeutic ultrasound. The latter is used for many purposes like cataract treatment, breaking kidney stones, dissolving tumors and cysts and changing or heating tissue by physical therapy. An ultrasound technician is a professional who takes care of the technicalities of ultrasound procedures. Here is a list of the specializations that they could take training in to have better prospects in the field of ultrasound. Ultrasound salary is directly proportional to amount of training and specializations a technician has to their credit. This list is not exhaustive and complete but a sample that is representative. Ultrasound technicians could specialize in cardiac ultrasound. The branch of ultrasound that deals with cardiology is known as echo cardiology. It helps to find potential cardiac problems. The sound reflections bounce off the patient’s heart and give an image that is then used for assessing cardiac conditions. An ultrasound technician could specialize in emergency medicine. Here sonography is used for fast diagnoses in case of emergencies as it can prove crucial. There is a FAST or Focused Assessment with Sonography for Trauma exam that helps doctors to judge the kind of trauma the patient’s body has been dealt related to fractures, punctures, cuts, impacts and other such traumatic events. The average person relates ultrasound to gynaecology. An ultrasound technician could specialize in obstetrics/gynaecology ultrasound wherein the state of the foetus is assessed. Ultrasound technology creates pictures of the foetus in the mother’s womb that parents often find exciting and fascinating. Many people keep the films as very early pictures of the baby. The reproductive system of women is also studied in this way.
Musculoskeletal ultrasound looks at the images of muscles and bones to assess disease or health. This is useful for muscle sprains and tears or bone fractures. It helps to view soft tissues, bone surfaces, ligaments, muscles, nerves and tendons in this way. Urological ultrasound looks at the testes and prostrate of a man. A urological ultrasound tech would be able to study the region of the pelvis of both, men and women.