During an ultrasound, high-frequency sound waves capture images of pets’ internal structures. The equipment includes the main ultrasound machine as well as a smaller handheld device. The ultrasound machine emits sound waves, and the handheld device delivers those waves to the patient’s body. The waves bounce off of internal structures, like organs, and return to a sensor in the machine. The machine uses these echoes to instantly produce images we can view on a screen.
Ultrasound is a powerful tool when we need to capture detailed images of soft, fluid-filled organs, including the gallbladder, liver, spleen, and kidneys. Because ultrasound produces images in real-time, we also use this technology to examine the heart as it beats. Ultrasound also helps us detect and diagnose certain types of cancer and monitor pregnancies and fetal health.