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Become a Diagnostic Medical Sonographer

Reviewed by Mark Kowalsky, MD
Become a Diagnostic Medical Sonographer

A diagnostic medical sonographer is the person that performs the ultrasound, most commonly on pregnant women. Gel must be applied to the stomach of the pregnant woman and a transducer is attached. A good bedside manner is essential in every diagnostic medical sonographer to keep the mother relaxed whist preparing her for the procedure. The mother is then able to see the live images of inside her belly and her growing baby on the screen. The diagnostic medical sonographer must concentrate on taking good clear images so that any problems are easily visible when the doctor analysis them. It is common for the doctor to ask for the opinion if the sonographer also.

When to use Ultrasound?

Ultrasounds aren’t only used with pregnant women but the technology is also beneficial for spotting problems related to other health problems. Soft tissues show up clearer on ultra sounds than they do on x-rays or MRI’s so it is not uncommon for a diagnostic medical sonographer to also work on other areas of the body including the kidney, heart and eyes. The details provided of tiny parts of the body can only be achieved through ultrasounds.

How to use Ultrasound?

The main part of any diagnostic medical sonographer major is to learn all about the ultrasounds equipment and how to use it to create useful and clear images of internal body structures. These images can then be passed along to doctors, who can identify abnormalities and problems and make a diagnosis. The frequency of ultrasounds waves is over 20,000 kHz. Students will also learn the intricate details of internal organs and blood vessels as well as how to properly interpret ultrasound images. A medical knowledge will be acquired into the medical conditions and problems that an ultra sound and a diagnostic medical sonographer are most commonly used to identify. After initial broad studies it is possible to specialise in a certain field of sonography such as vascular, cardiac or obstetric and gynaecology.

What you need to use Ultrasound?

This field of study required someone with logic, precision, compassion and strength, as these are all the qualities looked for in a great diagnostic medical sonographer. Good communication skills are also a must as sonographers spend a lot of time with patients as well as reporting their finding with other medical staff. Researchers are constantly discovering new and broader uses of ultrasound technology and it is important that sonographers are able to keep up and continue to develop their skills.

How to start?

Schooling usually begins with knowledge of the physics behind the workings of ultrasounds technology. As you can imagine, it is important to understand how the technology works and in particular wave theory in order to be able to use to the best effect. There will be a combination of lectures, lab work and discussion groups in order to gain a full grasp of theory behind the work of a diagnostic medical sonographer. Students will learn about the way and the speed at which sounds is bale to travel through the different materials that make up the human body as well as practicing to solve equations using the distance formula.

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