GENERAL ABDOMINAL SCAN
Abdominal scan is used to examine organs, blood vessels and lymph nodes in the abdomen General abdominal ultrasound is the most complete scan and include upper abdominal (liver, gall bladder, pancreas, spleen, kidneys and ureters as well as the large blood vessel of the abdomen such as the aorta and lymph nodes) and transabdominal pelvic ultrasound (bladder, uterus, ovaries and adnexae in female, bladder and prostate in male). With this exams, a wide variety of complaints can be investigated (e.g. abdominal pain, liver diseases, kidney or gallbladder stones, tumours and malformations).
How the scan is done?
The doctor will apply a special non-greasy gel on the skin and will move the probe on your abdomen and ribcage to gather the images of your organs, that will be displayed on the screen.
You may experience mild pressure from the probe, as it passes over your abdomen.
The doctor may ask you to take a breath and hold it during the scanning. This allows to see structures more clearly because they are not moving, obtaining the best images of your organs.
You may be asked to move into various positions including lying on your side, sitting or standing to improve the quality of scan.
How do I prepare?
You should not have anything to eat for 4-6 hours before the procedure. You can drink as much water as you like. You should take your usual daily medication with some liquid in the morning.
The test might not be helpful in the presence of stool or air in the stomach or intestines. It is best to avoid food that produces flatulence for a few days before the procedure.
In case of a complete abdominal scan (upper abdominal + pelvic) you will need to drink four glasses of water and finish one hour before your exam. Do not empy your bladder. A full bladder helps to acquire clear images of the pelvic organs. If you have a problem holding your bladder full you may arrive ahead of time, to drink your water at the clinic. If you feel the bladder is very uncomfortably full, please void some urine to relieve the pressure but try not to empty the bladder.