An abdominal ultrasound uses reflected sound waves to produce a picture of the organs and other structures in the upper abdomen. Sometimes a special ultrasound is done for a closer look at a specific organ, such as a kidney ultrasound.
An ultrasound does not use X-rays or other types of radiation. During an abdominal ultrasound, a small hand-held unit called a transducer is gently moved over the belly. A computer converts the reflected sound waves into a picture shown on a TV screen.
An abdominal ultrasound may help find problems of the liver, gallbladder, spleen, pancreas, abdominal aorta, and kidneys.
Medical Review:Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & Brian O'Brien, MD, FRCPC - Internal Medicine & Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Martin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine & Howard B. Schaff, MD - Diagnostic Radiology