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Doppler Ultrasonography


Overview :

Doppler ultrasonography makes use of two different principles. The ultrasound principle is this: when a high-frequency sound is produced and aimed at a target, it will be reflected by its target and the reflected sound can be detected back at its origin. In addition, it is known that certain crystals (called piezoelectric crystals) produce an electrical pulse when vibrated by a returning sound.

The Doppler principle is simply that sound pitch increases as the source moves toward the listener and decreases as it moves away.

Medical science utilizes these two principles in the following way. A transducer (sometimes called a probe) containing piezoelectric crystals sends a series of short sound pulses into the body and pauses between each pulse to listen for the returning sounds. The machine then determines the direction and depth of each returning sound and coverts this into a point of light on a television monitor. Thousands of these pulses are computed and displayed every second to produce an image of the organ being studied. The image allows the doctor to see the organ functioning in real time.

The newest addition to this test is the addition of color. Adding color to the image shows the direction and rate of blood flow more clearly.

During a Doppler ultrasonography procedure the technician will apply a gel to the skin, then place the transducer against the skin at various angles. The transducer sends the information it receives to a television monitor that shows a moving image of the organ being studied. The technician can save these images either on video tape, paper, or x-ray film for further study.




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