We often associate the field of sonography with ultrasounds of babies in utero and obstetricians in general. Although an overwhelming number of sonography technicians who have earned a bachelor of medical sonography degree do, in fact, work with pregnant patients, but that is far from everything they have been trained to do. Sonographers routinely perform ultrasounds on patients with internal issues, such as tumors and internal bleeding, aiding doctors in diagnosing their patients without the need for invasive exploratory procedures. To understand what sonography is capable of, first you must see how it works in practice.
Technology Advances in Sonography
The first 3D and 4D ultrasound scans featured in magazines and new reports showed the detailed faces of nearly full term babies. What these reports didn’t spend a lot of time talking about was how this form of detailed internal scanning was changing the landscape of internal medicine. Technicians with an online medical sonography degree can now help to create internal images of patients that would normally have needed an endoscopy for proper diagnosis. Sonography technology is becoming more precise and technicians are learning how to use both traditional and advanced forms of sonography to build three-dimensional images to help doctors.
What Can Be Seen From Outside
Normally when a patient complains of intense internal pain, the attending doctor asks about accompanying symptoms and performs a physical before sending the patient away for internal scanning. Whether in the form of a CT scan or an ultrasound, these images are processed and analyzed until an educated guess can be made. As sonography equipment continues to develop, doctors become more reliant on the results that sonography can produce. These digital internal images are not only more cost more effective than performing invasive procedures, they are safer and get physicians the answers that they need faster when time is of critical importance.
Sonography and Chronic Diseases
Cancer is one of the diseases that a trained sonographer can pick up within minutes of an internal scan, but it is not the actual diagnosis that is most important. Through 3D imaging, sonographers can find the location of cancerous tumors, and determine which vital organs, bones or blood supplies they may be impeding. Simply put, an oncologist is better able to plan out and perform operations when he or she knows the location and proximity of cancerous growths. Ultrasounds are also used to determine if an implant has ruptured and where the leaking silicon may have migrated. Overall, chronic diseases that severely affect the human body internally are often diagnosed and tracked with the assistance of sonography.
Many people still aren’t aware that ultrasounds are used regularly outside of obstetrics. From patients with reproductive issues to digestive diseases, a quick ultrasound can pick up what your general physician is not effectively able to see from the outside looking in. Technicians in this field not only have a high level of job security, they can also directly benefit from the fact that their work is helping to advance technology in medicine.