Vascular ultrasound screening examines the body’s circulatory system.  Vascular ultrasound provides pictures of the body’s veins and arteries.  A Doppler ultrasound study may be part of a vascular ultrasound examination and evaluates blood velocity as it flows through a blood vessel.   There are many medical problems that can be seen using an ultrasound scan. These include:

  • Stroke: Carotid arteries are the arteries that supply the blood flow to the brain and if blocked can lead to a Stroke. The ultrasound can detect whether the arteries are narrowed, calcified or have a blood clot.
  • Aortic Aneurysm: This is a swelling (dialation) of the aorta. This is a potentially fatal condition for which early medical intervention can be life saving.
  • Thrombosis of veins (DVT): This is a condition in which a blood clot forms in one of the deep veins, usually in the leg. This can cause pain and swelling.

What will happen during the examination?

During the ultrasound scan the radiologist or sonographer will place a warm water-based gel on the area to be examined, and will then press firmly on the skin with an ultrasound probe, moving it around until they have obtained the desired images. The ultrasound scan has no known risks and is usually pain free. When the scan is completed the gel can be wiped off easily using tissue.