Non-invasive imaging care

Ultrasound at Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital–Needham

Ultrasound, also called sonography, is the most non-invasive type of diagnostic imaging. It provides real-time, moving pictures that let our imaging specialists see your organs and soft tissues. At Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital–Needham, we use the most advanced ultrasound equipment to capture highly-detailed images that can detect a problem or diagnose your condition.

Why BID Needham?

Our department is accredited by the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine. That means our imaging specialists are ultrasound experts. We capture the clear pictures that can lead to an accurate diagnosis and up-to-date, timely care. In addition, our team of sonographers — the staff members who complete your scan — specialize in abdominal, breast, vascular and general ultrasound. That means we have the training and experience to provide you with the exact type of scan you need.

What is an Ultrasound?

Ultrasound is different from CT scans and X-rays. Like MRI scans, ultrasound does not use radiation. Instead, it uses sound waves to produce pictures of the inside of your body. Ultrasound can create images of your organs and soft tissues, such as your blood vessels.

When Might You Need an Ultrasound?

Ultrasound is often associated with pregnancy. But your provider may recommend the scan to investigate unexplained symptoms not related to pregnancy. This can include pain, lumps or any abnormal blood tests.

In addition to general health concerns, ultrasound can answer questions about a variety of different issues:

If your provider is concerned about your heart, they may order an echocardiogram. This scan shows how well blood flows through your heart.

What Can You Expect from an Ultrasound?

Most ultrasounds don’t require any preparation. However, for some, you may be asked to have a full bladder or to avoid eating or drinking for several hours before the scan.

Before your test, your sonography may ask you to remove jewelry, reposition your clothes or change into a gown.

What Happens During and After an Ultrasound?

Ultrasound exams are typically painless. Most tests last less than an hour.

During your ultrasound, you will lie down on a table. Your sonographer will put water-based gel on the area being examined. We’ll press a small, hand-held device, called a transducer, over the same area. The transducer sends sound waves into your body. It gathers the waves that bounce back and sends them to a computer to create the images.

There is no special after-care for most ultrasound exams.

How Will You Get Your Images?

Your images will be added to your electronic medical record after our imaging specialist has reviewed them. We will share these images with the physician who ordered your test.

Ultrasound Scheduling

Give us a call for same day scheduling. Physicians, please press 1.

Services & Specialties

If your provider recommends diagnostic imaging as part of your care, our experts are here to help. We work closely with other specialists at BID Needham to ensure you get the care you need as quickly as possible.