pelvic ultrasound scan

Ultrasound Scan for Womens Health

ultrasound scan pelvis and abdominal

Polycystic ovarian syndrome, uterine fibroids, ovarian cysts, pelvic inflammatory disease, pelvic organ prolapse — all of these conditions have one thing in common. They’re diagnosed using pelvic ultrasound technology.

Developed by a team of Scottish researchers over 50 years ago in the aftermath of World War II, this technology has come a long way since then and is, quite literally, saving lives the world over.

Learn more about what to expect from a Wellwoman scan and why ultrasound technology is so important for women’s health.

Pelvic Ultrasound: A Closer Look

Also referred to as sonography, ultrasounds are both popular and beneficial because of how efficient and accurate they are. They’re also non-invasive, which means that there’s no downtime associated with this test.

Ultrasound technology uses very high frequency sound waves to capture detailed images of the internal structure of the body. The end result is a sonograph. It appears as white pixels against a black background, detailing internal organs or areas of soft tissue.

In the case of a pelvic ultrasound, this includes organs such as the bladder, ovaries, fallopian tubes, the lining of the uterus, vagina, and rectum. A pelvic ultrasound may also encompass areas of the lower abdomen.

Ultrasound scanning is the best way for a doctor to see and assess what’s happening inside the body, without having to cut you open.

How is an ultrasound different from an x-ray, you might wonder?

While the overall premise is the same, an ultrasound can provide more detailed imagery in some cases, and does not expose you to radiation.

A pelvic ultrasound is somewhat of an umbrella term that encompasses several different types of sonography. Let’s take a look at the different types of ultrasound beneficial to women:

private ultrasound scan

An Abdominal Ultrasound

The purpose of this test is to analyse organs inside the belly, specifically, the lower part of the belly.

During the ultrasound, a sonographer applies warm gel to the lower abdomen area. They then use a tool known as a transducer, pressing it onto the skin to see the organs and soft tissue underneath.

The gel helps the transducer move easily over your skin during the scan. While you could have an x-ray of your abdomen, it does not offer as much detail as ultrasound, especially if you have renal stones or gallstones.

If you have abdominal pain, have experienced trauma to the abdomen, or even have unexplained uterine pain, an abdominal scan is useful.

A Transvaginal Ultrasound

This type of scan is incredibly beneficial in women because it examines several different reproductive organs at once, from inside the vagina.

For example, a sonographer can examine the vagina, uterine lining, fallopian tubes, pelvic cavity, bladder, and ovaries in just one scan.

During this ultrasound, a sonographer inserts a transducer into the vagina. The transducer is covered with a warm gel to assist with lubrication. They then move the transducer around gently to obtain imagery of different reproductive organs.

When Is a Pelvic Ultrasound Necessary?

So, when is it a good idea to visit your doctor and when might they recommend any of these pelvic ultrasounds?

Some of the most common troublesome symptoms include:

  • Painful sexual intercourse
  • Infertility — issues trying to fall pregnant
  • Painful urination, i.e. a burning sensation when urinating
  • Unexplained pelvic or abdominal pain
  • Unexplained or sudden swelling in your abdomen
  • Trauma to the abdomen or pelvic area
  • Irregular or exceptionally painful menstruation and PMS symptoms
  • Menstruation after menopause
  • Prolapse/incontinence

Thanks to the innovative technology of ultrasound, it can diagnose a myriad of different conditions. From hernias to kidney stones, ovarian cysts, polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), ectopic pregnancy, and more.

Not only is ultrasound helpful in diagnosing these conditions, but it’s also used for important procedures such as biopsies and IUD placement in the uterus.

Preparing for an Ultrasound: What To Expect

Different types of pelvic ultrasounds require different levels of preparation. For some, you don’t need to prepare much at all.

When it comes to pelvic ultrasounds of the reproductive organs, you’ll need to arrive for your scan with a full bladder. Begin drinking about one litre of water an hour before your scan so that it’s nice and full when you arrive.

For an ultrasound of the abdomen, you might need to fast for a few hours before your scan. This means cutting out food or drinks (except water) for at least 6 hours before the test.

Bear in mind that the doctor who refers you for an ultrasound will brief you on how to prepare before the scan. You might also receive instructions via email or telephone a few days before.

Is It Painful?

Ultrasound scans are completely harmless and do not cause any pain. This is just one of the reasons they’re so widely used today. For the most part, they’re performed over the skin.

The most discomfort you might feel is a feeling of pressure against a full bladder.

Transvaginal or rectal scans are a little different. While they’re by no means painful, they are uncomfortable for some women. The important thing is to relax and breathe, and trust that your sonographer knows exactly what they’re doing.

Looking For Private Ultrasound Scanning?

If you need a pelvic ultrasound and prefer the idea of a private clinic, then our team at Bothwell Medical Rooms & Core Clinic are your Glasgow and Lanarkshire go-to for a Wellwoman scan.

We offer private clinics in both Bothwell and Hamilton for all your diagnostic needs. Get in touch with our team for efficient service that fits in with your schedule.

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pelvic ultrasound scan

Why You Should Consider A Private Ultrasound Scan

private ultrasound scan

Did you know that over 11 million ultrasounds are done each year in the United Kingdom? Many people associate ultrasound with pregnancy. Several medical conditions would necessitate an ultrasound.

Ultrasounds are an imaging tool that is incredibly valuable for healthcare professionals. Your doctor can use ultrasounds to look at various areas of the body. However, some people opt for a private ultrasound scan instead of going through their healthcare provider.

There are several reasons a person might choose to get a private ultrasound instead of going through the NHS. This guide will discuss what you need to know about getting an ultrasound scan in Glasgow.

What Are Private Ultrasound Scans?

Private ultrasound scans are ultrasounds scheduled with healthcare providers outside the NHS network. Sometimes the backlog for ultrasounds can be pretty lengthy.

Waiting too long for an ultrasound might result in late diagnostics. It can also lead to increased anxiety for many patients.

Getting a private ultrasound ensures you can get your results faster. You’ll also have more flexibility to schedule the private ultrasound around your schedule.

Another benefit of private ultrasounds is that you don’t need a referral from your GP. You can make the appointment yourself. You can also get same-day results in many locations.

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What’s an Ultrasound?

An ultrasound imaging test utilises high-intensity sound waves to look inside your body. Other terms for ultrasounds include ultrasonography or sonography. The sound waves create real-time video or pictures of soft tissues or internal organs.

An ultrasound lets your healthcare provider see details of your internal organs without incisions. They differ from x-rays, which use radiation to see inside the body.

When you get an ultrasound, your healthcare provider will pass a probe or transducer inside of a body opening or over your body. Before they do that, they’ll apply gel to your skin. The gel enables the ultrasound waves transmitted from the device to enter your body.

As the device sends sound waves into your body, they bounce off various soft tissues and internal organs. The sound waves return to the device, converting them into electrical signals.

A computer is used to convert electrical signals into videos or pictures. These images get displayed on a nearby screen.

What Are the Types of Ultrasounds?

Ultrasounds can get broken up into three primary categories. These categories include:

  • Diagnostic ultrasound
  • Pregnancy ultrasound
  • Procedural ultrasounds for guidance

Diagnostic Ultrasounds

Your healthcare provider will use diagnostic ultrasound to look at the internal areas of your body. They do this to see if an area is not working correctly.

This type of ultrasound can also help your doctor discover what’s causing different symptoms in your body. These symptoms can include:

  • Abnormal blood tests
  • Masses
  • Unexplained pain

During most diagnostic ultrasounds, the ultrasound technician will use a device outside your skin. On other occasions, they might have to put the device inside your body. This includes your rectum or vagina.

What type of diagnostic ultrasound you receive depends upon your symptoms. Common examples of diagnostic ultrasounds include:

  • Kidney ultrasound
  • Abdominal ultrasound
  • Pelvic ultrasound
  • Transvaginal ultrasound
  • Testes
  • Lumps & Bumps
  • Sports Injury (MSK)

Procedural Ultrasounds for Guidance

Ultrasounds can help healthcare providers perform various procedures more precisely. One example of this type of ultrasound is to help a healthcare provider guide needle placement to get a sample of tissue or fluid from:

  • Muscles
  • Joints
  • Tendons
  • Soft-tissue masses
  • Fluid collections or cysts
  • Transplant organs
  • Organs

These ultrasounds are also used during embryo transfer for IVF or to confirm the IUD placement.

Frequently Asked Questions About Private Ultrasound Scans

While getting an ultrasound can be intimidating, there’s nothing to worry about regarding the procedure. Let’s discuss some of the most commonly asked questions regarding private ultrasounds.

What’s the Cost of a Private Ultrasound Scan?

The cost of a private ultrasound scan depends upon a few factors. These factors include your health insurance coverage and what type of ultrasound you’re getting.

Below are the costs of some of the ultrasounds we offer:

  • Pelvic Scan inc Transvaginal: £150
  • Abdominal Scan: £125
  • Scrotum and Testes Scan: £125
  • Sports Injury: £125

Does My Bladder Have to Be Full?

You’ll be required to have a full bladder for most pelvic ultrasounds. When your bladder is full, it pushes your uterus into the ideal position. It also brightens your pelvis so we can get a clear view of the ovaries and uterus.

Additionally, a full bladder will move your bowel and intestines out of the way. Your ultrasound technician will be mindful that your bladder is full during this ultrasound. They will typically let you go to the toilet once this portion of the ultrasound is complete.

What Should I Do Before My Appointment?

An ultrasound scan can take anywhere from 20 minutes to one hour. We recommend you wear comfortable, loose clothing. You might be required to change into a gown during your ultrasound.

If you’re required to have a full or empty bladder, we’ll let you know ahead of time. Some exams might require you to avoid drinking or eating for a certain length of time beforehand. We recommend scheduling these ultrasounds at the beginning of the day.

What Happens During a Private Ultrasound?

What happens during your appointment depends upon what area you’re getting scanned. As we said earlier, you might be asked to change into a gown.

Your scan typically starts with you laying on your back or side on a comfortable surface. The technician will apply gel to your skin in the area that’s getting scanned. The gel won’t stain your clothes or affect your skin.

The ultrasound technician will then move the device over the gel to look inside your body. They might ask you to hold your breath or be still for a few seconds. This enables them to get clearer images.

Once the ultrasound technician is done, they’ll wipe the remaining gel off your skin.

Are Ultrasounds Painful?

External ultrasounds are typically not painful.

You might experience discomfort if you have a full bladder during your procedure. You might also feel uncomfortable lying on the exam table if you’re pregnant.

Internal ultrasounds that go inside of your rectum or vagina might be uncomfortable. You shouldn’t experience any pain.

Your ultrasound technician has your comfort in mind. Let them know if you’re experiencing any pain or discomfort during your scan. They’ll do their best to make you feel at ease.

Schedule a Private Ultrasound Scan Today

Scheduling a private ultrasound scan ensures you get your results as quickly as possible. You can avoid the lengthy wait times you might encounter with the NHS. Get the information you and your healthcare provider need to move forward.

Have you been searching for an “ultrasound scan near me” without any luck finding a reputable provider? Contact Bothwell Medical Rooms or Core Clinic today to schedule a private ultrasound scan in Lanarkshire.