Vascular Ultrasound Studies

What are vascular studies? 

Doppler ultrasound is a special type of ultrasound which is used to look at blood flow. A Doppler ultrasound machine has a hand-held scanner which is connected to a computer. It uses soundwaves to make pictures of the blood flow in your major arteries and veins.

Your doctor will also rely on a vascular ultrasound to:

  • Get information about blood supply to organs like the brain
  • Locate stenosis, plaque buildup, or narrowing of blood vessels
  • Evaluate if you are eligible for angioplasty or a stent
  • Assess varicose veins
  • Identify localized weaknesses in blood vessel walls

A vascular ultrasound scan lasts approximately 30 to 60 minutes, depending on the scan location.

Carotid ultrasound exams use sound waves to assess blood flow through the two carotid arteries in the neck. These arteries are crucial, as they deliver blood from the heart to the brain.

Carotid ultrasounds inform your doctor about stenosis and the health of your arteries. Testing for narrowed arteries helps your doctor assess your risk of stroke. An early diagnosis can give you enough time to implement a medical or surgical treatment plan to reduce or remove blockages in your arteries.

Reasons your doctor may refer you for a carotid ultrasound include:

  • High blood pressure / cholesterol
  • Diabetes
  • History of heart disease
  • Recent transient ischemic attack (TIA)
  • Coronary artery disease
  • Recent mini-stroke

You may go back to your normal activities unless your provider advises you differently.

Generally, there is no special type of care following an ultrasound study. Your healthcare provider may give you other instructions, depending on your situation.

Springfield Heart Surgeons Vascular Ultrasound Studies
Springfield Heart Surgeons Vascular Ultrasound Studies