Vascular disease affects millions of men and women each year, and thanks to today’s advanced medical techniques, many of those diseases can be treated using minimally-invasive approaches that can be completed on an outpatient basis, allowing you to enjoy better health on your terms and on your schedule. Since the veins are located beneath the skin, many vein problems aren’t always readily apparent. Fortunately, duplex ultrasound makes it much easier to diagnose vascular disease and to prescribe and guide vein treatment. If you’ve never had a duplex ultrasound, you’re in for a pleasant surprise: The process is painless and takes just a few moments to perform. Here’s what else you should know:
Duplex Ultrasound: 5 Things to Know
- Duplex ultrasound doesn’t use ionizing radiation like x-rays and CT scans, so there’s no risk of radiation exposure. Instead, it uses ultrasound waves which pass through the skin and “bounce off” blood vessels, sending back data to be interpreted by a computer, which in turn creates images your vein doctor can use to evaluate your vascular health.
- It’s called “duplex” because it combines two “types” of ultrasound in one procedure: traditional ultrasound that “bounces off” vessels to create still images and video, and Doppler ultrasound, which is designed to capture and measure movements and motions like blood flow. Doppler ultrasound can help uncover areas of blockage where blood flow may be impaired. Combined, the two approaches are very accurate in identifying areas of plaque buildup and other issues that can interfere with circulation.
- There’s no special preparation – no liquids to take and no injections of dye. If you take some medications like blood thinners, let your vein doctor know ahead of time so you can alter your schedule if needed to ensure you get the most accurate results.
- It can be performed quickly, right in our office. Once your test is complete, you can go right back to your normal routine.
- It’s painless. Duplex ultrasound uses a handheld device called a transducer to send ultrasound waves through your skin without any pain. The device will be passed over your skin applying firm pressure to ensure the images are as clear as possible.
Duplex Ultrasound: The First Step Toward Better Vascular Health
Duplex ultrasound provides critical information necessary to enable your vascular surgeon to diagnose an array of vascular health issues. At United Vein Centers, we help patients from Tampa, Clearwater and Sarasota, Fla., understand their vascular issues so they can take the most effective and most appropriate steps for optimal vascular health. If you have symptoms of vascular disease, including numbness, pain, tingling, spider veins or varicose veins, or if you’d like to learn more about how to maintain good vascular health, schedule an evaluation today by calling (813)257-9444 or fill out our online form for more information.