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Abdominal Ultrasound

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 handheld 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.

Last Revised: November 29, 2012

Author: Healthwise Staff

Medical Review: Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & Howard Schaff, MD - Diagnostic Radiology

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