What's the Difference Between an Ultrasound and a Sonogram?
Most people have heard about ultrasounds and sonograms, but people often have trouble differentiating the two. We often hear the two terms used interchangeably and while they are similar and related in various ways, they aren’t the entirely the same. Some of you might think you know the difference or maybe you can guess but if you are ever recommended one of these scans, we thought we would compare them as simply.
Ultrasound- The Procedure
An ultrasound is the actual procedure you receive and a high frequency sound that is inaudible to humans (whales use this to communicate). During an ultrasound exam, a doctor applies the ultrasound gel to the area of the patient’s body that will be scanned. This gel helps transmit the high-frequency sound waves produced by the probe-like ultrasound transducer. Through this process, the transducer both transmits and collects the sound waves that travel through and bounce back from the patient’s body, sending the data back into the computer to create an internal image also known as a sonogram.
Sonogram- The Image
Sonograms are often used during pregnancy to get images of the babies. Sonography is also used to analyze tissues and organs of the body, such as the heart, eyes and abdomen. For example, a woman might get an ultrasound (the procedure) at around 18 weeks pregnant to produce a sonogram (the image), in order to tell the babies gender. Besides this, sonogram imagers are also used to diagnose internal problems such as pelvic bleeding, and to locate cancerous cells
In short, an ultrasound is the procedure you get and a sonogram is the image it produces. There are numerous types of ultrasounds (such as pelvis, abdominal, etc). By far, the most common is Obstetric Ultrasound Imaging. This is the type that produces a sonogram of a woman’s baby. The good news is that ultrasounds are offered here at Carlsbad Open MRI! If you have any other questions, please feel free to contact us!