Gynaecological Transvaginal Ultrasound
What is a transvaginal ultrasound?
Ultrasound is the term used for high-frequency soundwaves. Ultrasound examinations use these sound waves to produce a picture or image onto a screen showing the inside of your body.
Transvaginal ultrasound is an examination of the female pelvis. It helps to see if there is any abnormality in the uterus (womb), cervix (the neck of the womb), endometrium (lining of the womb), fallopian tubes, ovaries, bladder or the pelvic cavity. It looks at the pelvic organs from inside the vagina using a special smooth, thin, handheld device called a transducer. This differs from an abdominal ultrasound, which uses a warm water-based clear gel applied to the skin of the abdomen and the transducer is moved gently across the pelvic area.
All ultrasound transducers transmit high-frequency sound waves, and these are reflected from different soft tissue, structures or parts in the body in different ways. These sound waves are converted to electrical impulses that produce a moving image on a screen.
An ultrasound has many advantages. It is painless and does not involve radiation, which means it is very safe. The high-frequency sound waves ensure images show very high detail, capable of looking at the very tiniest parts of the body. A health professional will be there with you, and you have the opportunity to communicate any concerns you have.
What are the risks of a transvaginal ultrasound?
There are no known risks of having transvaginal ultrasound. It uses sound waves to obtain images and there is no radiation involved.
Why would my doctor refer me to have this procedure?
The test is requested by your doctor if you have symptoms of pelvic pain or abnormal bleeding, or to check for fibroids (muscle tumours of the uterus), polyps (areas of thickening of the lining of the uterus), ovarian cysts or tumours, infertility, verification that an IUD is placed properly and many other conditions.
In DF Medical Centre the transvaginal ultrasound is usually done at the same time as the gynaecological consultation but it can be done separately. We do not require a referral from your GP. The consultation notes report, including the findings of the gynaecological transvaginal ultrasound can be sent to your doctor on request.
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