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Vascular Ultrasounds

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Whether you’re experiencing circulatory symptoms or your physicians are considering an angioplasty, you may receive a vascular ultrasound. This is one of many cardiology tests and diagnostic tools used at Richmond University Medical Center to diagnose conditions and evaluate treatments. Visit us for testing or more information in Staten Island, New York.

What Is a Vascular Ultrasound?

A vascular ultrasound is a non-invasive cardiology test used at Richmond University Medical Center. The test uses high-frequency, or ultrasound, waves to generate images of blood vessels. These images are valuable for detecting abnormalities in the blood vessels and blood flow, which can be indicators of a variety of ailments, including:

  • Blood clots and blockages
  • Enlarged arteries (aneurysms)
  • Swollen or twisted veins
  • Malfunctioning valves

Your vascular ultrasound might be accompanied by other tests to measure blood flow and ensure an accurate diagnosis. Vascular ultrasounds aren’t only a diagnostic tool, however. They are also used for purposes like evaluating angioplasty patients, ensuring proper blood flow to transplanted organs, and planning effective treatments for patients with circulatory conditions.

What to Expect on Testing Day

When visiting Richmond University Medical Center for your vascular ultrasound, wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing that will be easy to remove. You may be asked to remove jewelry as well or to change into a hospital gown. Then, you’ll undergo the procedure, which follows these steps:

  • You’ll undress to expose the area of interest and lie down on an examining table.
  • The examiner will coat the area of interest with a safe, conductive gel.
  • The technician will press a hand-held wand, or transducer, to your skin and move it back and forth over the area of interest. You may be asked to breathe in a certain way or to roll onto your side.
  • The transducer will emit sound waves toward your veins and record their echoes as images.

The entire procedure takes 30 to 90 minutes to complete and has no ill effects. It may be administered twice – before and after controlled physical exertion – to measure how your blood flow responds to stress. When you’re finished, you’ll be able to get dressed and resume your daily activities immediately. Meanwhile, the cardiologist will analyze the test’s results for any abnormalities.

When to Get a Vascular Ultrasound

A vascular ultrasound is typically administered whenever a patient is experiencing symptoms of a heart or circulation disorder, like a blood clot or twisted vein. Symptoms that warrant a vascular ultrasound may include:

  • Limb swelling, discoloration, and/or soreness
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Lower arm or leg cramps
  • Nausea, vomiting, or severe stomach pain
  • Bloated sensations
  • Diarrhea and bloody stools

You may have a higher likelihood of undergoing a vascular ultrasound if you have an increased risk of blood clots or swollen blood vessels. Other risk factors include diabetes, inherited blood disorders, pregnancy, a habit of smoking or alcohol use, stress, high cholesterol, and others.

Schedule Cardiology Testing Today

If you’re experiencing concerning symptoms or are concerned about your risk for developing cardiac conditions, talk to a physician about a vascular ultrasound. Richmond University Medical Center offers vascular ultrasounds alongside a comprehensive suite of cardiology tests and evaluations. To learn more or to schedule an appointment, contact us today.