Endovascular WA uses state-of-the-art Diagnostic Ultrasound Imaging equipment
Ultrasound imaging refers to the use of high frequency audio waves to create images of the tissues and organs within the body. It does not use harmful ionising radiation (like x-rays & CT), provides a live image in realtime and can give information about the flow of blood through vessels. Ultrasound works on the principle that sound waves echo and reflect off tissue. Different tissues have different densities and therefore different echo characteristics. The handheld ultrasound probe or transducer sends out high frequency sound waves and receives the reflected echoes. The ultrasound machine is able to interpret these reflected sound waves and create an image from them.
The sound waves used cannot be heard because they are at a frequency above the average human’s hearing range. A water-based gel is applied over the skin to help the transduction of the sound waves.
There are a number of ways in which Endovascular WA uses ultrasound diagnostic imaging for the treatment of vascular conditions and interventional medicine. Also ultrasound imaging is commonly used diagnostically – that is, to image the internal organs of the body, aiding clinicians to see what is going and evaluate symptoms.
Doppler ultrasound is a special type of ultrasound that utilises the Doppler effect to present a graphical representation of the speed and direction of flow (usually of blood). It is used extensively to identify narrowing of the blood vessels (eg. of the heart), as well blockages or clots and to identify congenital vascular malformations.
Ultrasounds can also be used to offer real-time imaging guidance for various procedures. These include ultrasound-guided fine needle aspiration (where a needle is used to aspirate a sample of fluid for testing), biopsies (similar to fine needle aspiration, but aspirating a sample of tissue) and injections (to ensure the correct location for injection). Some example images are shown above.
Endovascular WA specialises in a variety of ultrasound services including both diagnostic and interventional procedures. These include:
- Vascular (both venous and arterial)
- General abdominal
- Musculoskeletal (including ultrasound-guided injections)
- Delicate structures (testes, thyroid)
- Line insertions