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ALVA'S services

X-Ray / Ultrasound / ECG

1. X Ray

These rays are used to detect the breakage in human bones. Due to their small wavelength they can penetrate most of the body tissues, like skin and flesh, but are slow to penetrate the bones since the calcium present in the bones absorb most of X–Rays. Due to this the bones appears white on the black film and the black portion belongs to tissues and skin from which the X–Rays have passed.
The X-Rays are used in the cancer therapy for the cancer management.

X-ray are a form of radiant energy, like light or radio waves. X-rays can penetrate the body, ... a computer monitor.
When used with care, X-rays are safe. The amount of radiation used during most exams is very minimal. Radiologists and X-ray technologists are trained to use the least amount of radiation .
X-rays are a type of electromagnetic radiation, just like visible light.

An x-ray machine sends individual x-ray particles through the body. The images are recorded on a computer or film.
• Structures that are dense (such as bone) will block most of the x-ray particles, and will appear white.
• Metal and contrast media (special dye used to highlight areas of the body) will also appear white.
• Structures containing air will be black, and muscle, fat, and fluid will appear as shades of gray.
• The test is done in a hospital radiology department or in the health care provider's office. How you are positioned depends on the type of x-ray being done. Several different x-ray views may be needed.
• You need to stay still when you are having an x-ray. Motion can cause blurry images. You may be asked to hold your breath or not move for a second or two when the image is being taken.


2. Ultrasound

A small device called an ultrasound probe is used, which gives off high-frequency sound waves. You can't hear these sound waves, but when they bounce off different parts of the body, they create "echoes" that are picked up by the probe and turned into a moving image. This image is displayed on a monitor while the scan is carried out.

A medical imaging technique that uses high-frequency sound waves similar to the sonar that dolphins and submarines use. Ultrasound imaging is used to study many of the body’s organs by using high frequency sound waves instead of radiation. When sound waves are recorded, they are immediately displayed on a monitor in real time. Although most individuals are familiar with an ultrasound as the device that allows them to see a picture of an unborn child, physicians also use ultrasound to see images and movement inside the patient’s body, including the body’s blood flow, and the size and function of many internal organs including the heart, pancreas, liver, bladder and kidneys.
Most people are familiar with how an ultrasound shows a developing baby in the womb, but ultrasound can also help determine a person's risk of heart attack or problems in the abdomen or reproductive system. Ultrasound beams high-frequency sound waves into the body and the echoes that bounce off body tissues form into images. ultrasound procedure is a noninvasive (the skin is not pierced) diagnostic procedure used to assess soft tissue structures such as muscles, blood vessels, and organs.

Ultrasound uses a transducer that sends out ultrasonic sound waves at a frequency too high to be heard. When the transducer is placed at certain locations and angles, the ultrasonic sound waves move through the skin and other body tissues to the organs and structures within. The sound waves bounce off the organs like an echo and return to the transducer. The transducer picks up the reflected waves, which are then converted by a computer into an electronic picture of the organs or tissues under study.
Different types of body tissues affect the speed at which sound waves travel. Sound travels the fastest through bone tissue, and moves most slowly through air. The speed at which the sound waves are returned to the transducer, as well as how much of the sound wave returns, is translated by the transducer as different types of tissue.
A clear conducting gel is placed between the transducer and the skin to allow for smooth movement of the transducer over the skin and to eliminate air between the skin and the transducer for the best sound conduction.
By using an additional mode of ultrasound technology during an ultrasound procedure, blood flow can be assessed. An ultrasound transducer capable of assessing blood flow contains a Doppler probe. The Doppler probe within the transducer evaluates the velocity and direction of blood flow in the vessel by making the sound waves audible. The degree of loudness of the audible sound waves indicates the rate of blood flow within a blood vessel. Absence or faintness of these sounds may indicate an obstruction (blockage) of blood flow.
Ultrasounds are used to view internal organs as they function (in "real time," like a live TV broadcast), and to assess blood flow through various vessels. Ultrasound procedures are often used to examine many parts of the body such as the abdomen, breasts, female pelvis, prostate, scrotum, thyroid and parathyroid glands, and the vascular system. During pregnancy, ultrasounds are performed to evaluate the development of the fetus.

The ultrasound team in the radiology department uses ultrasound technology, or high frequency sound waves, to take pictures inside the body. Sometimes an ultrasound exam, also called a sonogram, is used to visualize areas of the body so a radiologist can perform an intervention or procedure. All ultrasounds are performed by board-certified sonographers and are interpreted by fellowship-trained, board-certified radiologists specialized in this field. Ultrasound imaging is a common diagnostic medical procedure that uses high-frequency sound waves to produce images (sonograms) of organs, tissues, or blood flow inside the body. Prenatal ultrasound examinations are performed by trained professionals, such as sonographers, radiologists, and obstetricians. The procedure involves using a transducer, which sends a stream of high-frequency sound waves into the body and detects their echoes as they bounce off internal structures. The sound waves are then converted to electric impulses, which are processed to form an image displayed on a computer monitor. It is from these images that videos and portraits are made.

What are some reasons why an Ultrasound exam is performed?

Sonography can be used to examine many parts of the body, such as the abdomen, breasts, female reproductive system, prostate, heart and blood vessels, and more. In obstetrics, ultrasound technology is used to study the age, number, and location of the fetus, as well as to examine the fetus for birth defects or other potential problems. In the abdomen, it is used to detect abnormalities such as gallstones or liver disease. Heart disease can be identified through cardiac ultrasound.

What happens during the scan?

The sonographer applies an odorless, colorless gel to the skin above the body structure(s) to be studied. This gel helps conduct sound waves from the ultrasound transducer down to the tissues that are the focus of the study. The sonographer applies the transducer to the skin and short pulses of ultrasound waves are emitted and received. As the transducer is moved around, an image of the various organs under study appears on a monitor. The sonographer then electronically stores what he or she considers to be the most diagnostically useful images. Your physician will interpret the selected images and use them to make a final diagnosis. Ultrasound exams in which the transducer is inserted into an opening of the body may produce minimal discomfort. If a Doppler ultrasound study is performed, you may actually hear pulse-like sounds that change in pitch as the blood flow is monitored and measured. Once the imaging is complete, the technician will wipe the gel off of your skin. After an ultrasound exam, you should be able to resume your normal activities immediately

What are the benefits?

Diagnostic ultrasound is noninvasive, involves no radiation, and avoids the possible hazards--such as bleeding, infection, or reactions to chemicals--of other diagnostic methods. Ultrasound scanning gives a clear picture of soft tissues that do not show up well on x-ray images and is the preferred imaging modality for the diagnosis and monitoring of pregnant women and their unborn babies.

3. ECG

An electrocardiogram or ECG is used to record the rhythm and electrical activity of your heart and can help to diagnose whether or not you are experiencing heart problems or have heart disease. Your GP can refer you here or you may be referred by your local hospital. All local hospitals will have ECG and exercise testing facilities.
An electrocardiogram (ECG) is a non-invasive procedure with no long-term risk involved. flammation (endocarditis).
An ECG may also be used to assess symptoms such as dizziness, inability to catch. have pacemakers or are taking heart medications may undergo an ECG as may those who have just undergone a cardiac catheterization procedure or had heart surgery. ECG is also performed during routine physical .. The electrocardiogram (ECG, EKG) is used extensively in the diagnosis of heart disease, ranging from congenital heart disease in infants Electrocardiogram (ECG) is a non-invasive (does not require an incision into the body) test that records the electrical activity of the heart. The electrical activity is related to the impulses that travel through the heart that determines the heart rate and rhythm. These electrical impulses, which cause your heart to contract and relax, are detected by an electrocardiographic machine and are transformed in the form of waves that can be displayed on a graph or monitor.
This test helps the doctor evaluate the patient’s cardiac condition, e.g. if there are any irregular heart rhythm or abnormal ECG morphology.

Preparations before test

• No restriction on food, liquid or medications prior to the test.
• Do not apply lotion, oil, or powder to the chest.

Preparations before test

You will be asked to lie on an examination couch while the medical technologist puts 10 electrodes directly onto your chest, arms and legs. These electrodes are sticky patches that can help detect and conduct the electrical currents of your heart to the ECG machine so they can be recorded and printed for your doctor to review.
You can breathe normally during the procedure but should not move, as this will disrupt the test results. After the procedure, the electrodes will be removed and you can resume your normal activity.
The test takes about 5 to 8 minutes.

Echocardiogram

An echocardiogram, often referred to as a cardiac echo or simply an echo, is a sonogram of the heart. (It is not abbreviated as ECG, because that is an abbreviation for an electrocardiogram.) Echocardiography uses standard two-dimensional, three-dimensional, and Doppler ultrasound to create images of the heart.
Echocardiography has become routinely used in the diagnosis, management, and follow-up of patients with any suspected or known heart diseases. It is one of the most widely used diagnostic tests in cardiology. It can provide a wealth of helpful information, including the size and shape of the heart (internal chamber size quantification), pumping capacity, and the location and extent of any tissue damage. An echocardiogram can also give physicians other estimates of heart function, such as a calculation of the cardiac output, ejection fraction, and diastolic function (how well the heart relaxes).
Echocardiography can help detect cardiomyopathies, such as hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, dilated cardiomyopathy, and many others. The use of stress echocardiography may also help determine whether any chest pain or associated symptoms are related to heart disease. The biggest advantage to echocardiography is that it is not invasive (does not involve breaking the skin or entering body cavities) and has no known risks or side effects.
An echocardiogram (echo) is a test that uses high frequency sound waves (ultrasound) to make pictures of your heart. The test is also called echocardiography or diagnostic cardiac ultrasound. Quick facts :
• An echo uses sound waves to create pictures of your heart’s chambers, valves, walls and the blood vessels (aorta, arteries, veins) attached to your heart.
• A probe called a transducer is passed over your chest. The probe produces sound waves that bounce off your heart and “echo” back to the probe. These waves are changed into pictures viewed on a video monitor.
• An echo can’t harm you.

Why do people need an echo test?

Your doctor may use an echo test to look at your heart’s structure and check how well your heart functions.
The test helps your doctor find out:
• The size and shape of your heart, and the size, thickness and movement of your heart’s walls.
• How your heart moves.
• The heart’s pumping strength.
• If the heart valves are working correctly.
• If blood is leaking backwards through your heart valves (regurgitation).
• If the heart valves are too narrow (stenosis).
• If there is a tumor or infectious growth around your heart valves.

Echocardiography is a diagnostic test that uses ultrasound waves to create an image of the heart muscle. Ultrasound waves that rebound or echo off the heart can show the size, shape, and movement of the heart's valves and chambers as well as the flow of blood through the heart. Echocardiography may show such abnormalities as poorly functioning heart valves or damage to the heart tissue from a past heart attack.

Purpose

Echocardiography is used to diagnose certain cardiovascular diseases. In fact, it is one of the most widely used diagnostic tests for heart disease. It can provide a wealth of helpful information, including the size and shape of the heart, its pumping strength, and the location and extent of any damage to its tissues. It is especially useful for assessing diseases of the heart valves. It not only allows doctors to evaluate the heart valves, but it can detect abnormalities in the pattern of blood flow, such as the backward flow of blood through partly closed heart valves, known as regurgitation. By assessing the motion of the heart wall, echocardiography can help detect the presence and assess the severity of coronary artery disease, as well as help determine whether any chest pain is related to heart disease. Echocardiography can also help detect hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, in which the walls of the heart thicken in an attempt to compensate for heart muscle weakness. The biggest advantage to echocardiography is that it is noninvasive (does not involve breaking the skin or entering body cavities) and has no known risks or side effects.

Precautions

Echocardiography is an extremely safe procedure and no special precautions are required.

Description

Echocardiography creates an image of the heart using ultra-high-frequency sound waves-sound waves that are too high in frequency to be heard by the human ear. The technique is very similar to ultrasound scanning commonly used to visualize the fetus during pregnancy.
An echocardiography examination generally lasts between 15-30 minutes. The patient lies bare-chested on an examination table. A special gel is spread over the chest to help the transducer make good contact and slide smoothly over the skin. The transducer, a small hand-held device at the end of a flexible cable, is placed against the chest. Essentially a modified microphone, the transducer directs ultrasound waves into the chest. Some of the waves get echoed (or reflected) back to the transducer. Since different tissues and blood all reflect ultrasound waves differently, these sound waves can be translated into a meaningful image of the heart, which can be displayed on a monitor or recorded on paper or tape. The patient does not feel the sound waves, and the entire procedure is painless. In fact, there are no known side effects.

Occasionally, variations of the echocardiography test are used. For example, Doppler echocardiography employs a special microphone that allows technicians to measure and analyze the direction and speed of blood flow through blood vessels and heart valves. This makes it especially useful for detecting and evaluating regurgitation through the heart valves. By assessing the speed of blood flow at different locations around an obstruction, it can also help to precisely locate the obstruction.
An exercise echocardiogram is an echocardiogram performed during exercise, when the heart muscle must work harder to supply blood to the body. This allows doctors to detect heart problems that might not be evident when the body is at rest and needs less blood. For patients who are unable to exercise, certain drugs can be used to mimic the effects of exercise by dilating the blood vessels and making the heart beat faster.

Preparation

The patient removes any clothing and jewelry above the chest.

Aftercare

No special measures need to be taken following echocardiography.

Risks

There are no known risks associated with the use of echocardiography.