Good SamaritanServices and Clinical CentersDiagnostic Imaging

Ultrasound

Good Samaritan Medical Center Ultrasound department is accredited by The Joint Commission and Massachusetts Department of Public Health. We provide a relaxing and comfortable environment for our patients, family members and guests. We pride ourselves in providing exceptional care and producing the highest of image quality.

Our professional ultrasound staff will greet you and thoroughly explain your test to you. All of your questions and concerns will be addressed. Our goal is make you feel informed, comfortable and relaxed about your ultrasound experience. We offer several services, including financial services, interpreter services and a patient advocate. Our sonographers are well trained in all of the newest technology.

Ultrasound

Our center operates using the Philips iU22 Ultrasound system. This system features 4-D (or, real time 3-D) image technology that allows patients to view the fetus and internal organs as if they were being held in their hands.  The system’s powerful imaging capabilities support a variety of common exams, including vascular, thyroid, and testicular exams.  It also offers imaging capabilities specifically beneficial in the evaluation of breast masses. Suspicious lesions can be identified sooner utilizing new, higher resolution, higher frequency transducers and also to guide catheters and needles in 3D space without radiation exposure.

Other benefits of ultrasound include a revolutionary workflow with faster, high-resolution image quality, more complete exams, and a quicker diagnosis. Ultrasound has become one of the most popular diagnostic methods among patients and physicians because it can be used in the most delicate conditions without major side effects. Ultrasound acquires an extremely high level of diagnostic information and can provide answers for our patients more quickly and easily.  Plus, results from the ultrasound exam often reduce the need for more invasive and expensive procedures. With the purchase of these state-of-the-art machines, our department now offers Renal Artery Doppler and Level II OB exams.

What are the common purposes to perform an ultrasound?

Ultrasound examinations can be used in various areas of the body for a variety of purposes. These purposes include examination of the chest, abdomen, blood vessels (such as to detect blood clots in leg veins) and the evaluation of pregnancy. Ultrasound is also commonly used to examine internal structures of the abdomen.  Gallstones and kidney stones can be easily detected. The size and structure of the kidneys, the ureters, liver, spleen, pancreas, and aorta within the abdomen can be examined. Ultrasound can detect fluid, cysts, tumors or abscess in the abdomen. Impaired blood flow from clots or arteriosclerosis in the legs can be detected by ultrasound. Aneurysms of the aorta can also be seen.

Ultrasound is beneficial during biopsy procedures. It allows for accurate needle placement to result in precise tissue extraction such as thyroid, renal, and breast biopsies.
During pregnancy, an ultrasound can be used to evaluate the size, gender, movement, and position of the growing baby. The baby's heart is usually visible early, and as the baby ages body motion becomes more apparent. The baby can often be visualized by the mother during the ultrasound, and the gender of the baby is sometimes detectable.
How do patients prepare for an ultrasound?

Preparation for ultrasound is minimal. Generally, if abdominal organs such as the gallbladder are to be examined, patients are requested to avoid eating and drinking with the exception of water for six to eight hours prior to the examination. This is because food causes gallbladder contraction, minimizing the size, which would be visible during the ultrasound. In preparation for examination of the baby and womb during pregnancy, it is recommended that mothers drink at least four to six glasses of water approximately one hour prior to the examination for the purpose of filling the bladder. The extra fluid in the bladder moves air-filled bowel loops away from the womb so that the baby and womb are more visible during the ultrasound test.

How is the Ultrasound procedure performed?

Ultrasound uses high-frequency sound waves to produce moving images of the body’s internal soft tissue structures.  It provides a safe, fast and relatively painless means of diagnostic imaging. The computer will then take the information and generate images that can be visualized on the monitor. 

For most ultrasound exams, the patient is positioned lying on their back on an examination stretcher that can be tilted or moved.

A clear warm gel is applied to the area of the body being studied to help the transducer make secure contact with the body and eliminate air pockets between the transducer and the skin. The sonographer then presses the transducer firmly against the skin and sweeps it back and forth over the area of interest. The transducer will send the signal to the computer, which will then be translated to produce an image on the monitor.

Doppler sonography is performed using the same transducer. Doppler is used to visualize arteries and veins. You may hear pulse-like sounds that change in pitch as the blood flow is monitored and measured.

When the examination is complete, the gel will be wiped off and the patient may be asked to dress and wait while the ultrasound images are reviewed. However, the sonographer or radiologist is often able to review the ultrasound images in real-time as they are acquired and the patient can be released immediately.

The sonographer will communicate with patient throughout the exam. The patient should be able to resume normal activities after the exam.

Scheduling

We offer appointments throughout the day, including early morning and evening appointments. We also offer appointments on Saturday and Sunday. Our department is very accommodating and will work with you to get you the best possible time that will fit into your schedule.  We welcome you to call our department with any questions or concerns at 508-427-3232. If you need to make or change an appointment, please call the Scheduling Department at 508-427-2665.


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