Are you interested in knowing how to become an Ultrasonography? Worry no more, you are fortunate to have come across this piece.
A job as a diagnostic medical sonographer may be right for you if you enjoy assisting people and working in a fast-paced, demanding workplace.
Ultrasound technicians, sonographers, and ultrasound technologists are different words for the same allied health practitioner who is highly specialized and trained. Ultrasound technologists are most commonly identified with doing prenatal ultrasounds, however, their employment options extend beyond obstetrics.
In this article you will learn more about becoming an ultrasound technician, everything from researching the profession and learning what a sonographer does to specialties and advanced employment prospects is covered in the sections below.
What is ultrasonography?
Ultrasonography creates images of internal organs and other tissues by using a high-frequency sound waves transducer.
A transducer is a device that converts electrical current into sound waves that are then sent into the body’s tissues. Sound waves are reflected back to the transducer, which converts the waves into electrical signals after they bounce off structures in the body. A computer converts an electrical signal pattern into an image that is displayed on a monitor and saved as a digital computer image. Because there are no x-rays used, there is no radiation exposure during ultrasonography.
Ultrasonographers, also known as diagnostic medical sonographers, use sound waves to create diagnostic images of the interior of a patient’s body. An ultrasound’s images are used to diagnose a variety of medical conditions.
These specialists prepare the patient for the procedure and operate the imaging equipment to produce high-quality images. The results are given to a doctor, who makes a diagnosis based on any abnormalities found inside the body.
Sonographers may be required to stand for extended periods of time and may be required to lift or turn patients on occasion.
How does Ultrasonography work?
The ultrasound image is created by passing sound waves ranging from 1 to 10 million hertz through a transducer that is placed over body structures. Sound waves are either absorbed or reflected back to crystals in the transducer’s head.
Sound waves, for example, travel through hollow or fluid-filled areas such as the bladder and blood vessels. On the screen, these areas are black. Tissue-filled areas allow some sound penetration and refraction, resulting in a grayish-white image.
As sound waves completely bounce back to the transducer, extremely hard structures, such as bone, produce a bright white image. This allows providers to see an image of the woman’s womb during pregnancy.
The amniotic fluid will appear black, enhancing the baby’s bones and tissues, which will appear white. The ultrasound is being performed to assess the baby’s development, determine the baby’s gender, and detect any abnormalities.
How long does it take to train as an Ultrasonographer?
An Associate of Science Degree (AAS) in diagnostic medical sonography is the bare minimum for becoming a practicing sonographer.
Students who already have a bachelor’s degree in a patient-care-related profession may be eligible for a shorter-term certificate program. Most degree programs require college-level math, science, and English as prerequisites.
The length of time it takes to complete a program varies depending on the requirements of the program.
- Earn Your Degree
12-18 months is about right.
Designed mostly for existing healthcare workers or individuals who have completed some form of higher education.
Students are prepared for entry-level sonography positions.
A minimum of two years of full-time attendance is required.
Typically leads to an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree with a diagnostic medical sonography focus. Educates students on how to work as a sonographer.
It’s critical to select a program that has been approved by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) in order to be qualified to take ARDMS or Cardiovascular Credentialing International (CCI) exams.
Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)
4 years approximately
Typically leads to a Bachelor of Science degree with a diagnostic medical sonography concentration.
Educates pupils on how to work as a sonographer.
It is critical to select a CAAHEP-accredited school in order to be qualified to take examinations offered by the ARDMS or CCI organizations.
Due to the extended period of schooling and specialty training, students may have more job prospects and be eligible for several specialty registry examinations.
- Get Certified
By enrolling in an institution that is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP), you will be prepared to take national certification examinations. Almost all employers prefer American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography certification (ARDMS).
ARDMS (American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography): The ARDMS (American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography) is a premier accrediting organization with a global reputation. Many states require prospective sonographers to become certified in one of the ARDMS’ five ultrasound specializations by satisfying educational and experience requirements and passing a certification exam.
The ARRT (American Registry for Radiologic Technologists), CCI (Cardiovascular Credentialing International), and JCAHPO are some of the other licensing or certification organizations that offer ultrasound technology credentials (Joint Commission on Allied Health Personnel in Ophthalmology).
Mandatory licensure regulations for ultrasound technicians have been passed or proposed in a number of states, including New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, and Oregon. It will be impossible to work as a sonographer in these four states without first obtaining a license or certificate.
Even in states where ultrasound certification is not required by law, most businesses prefer or need a certified or credentialed ultrasound technician. In general, those who are certified have a competitive advantage over those who are not when it comes to finding work.
Why can’t ultrasound technicians tell you the ultrasound Results?
If you’ve ever had an ultrasound, you’ve probably questioned why the tech doesn’t tell you what they’re seeing.
Because this may influence the patient’s treatment decisions, your ultrasound technician should not inform you of your results or even respond to what they saw.
That’s not to suggest your technician doesn’t know what she’s looking at. Although an ultrasound technicians should be familiar enough with anatomy to do the treatment, they are not doctors. Only a doctor has the authority to disclose test results with a patient, as they may also discuss treatment options.
What Does Ultrasound Technician Training Entail?
Multiple classes about the human body, proper sonography methods, and other topics are required of students in an ultrasound technician program.
The terminology used in medicine;
- Physiology and anatomy
- Physics in general
- Abdominal sonography principles
- Pathology on echocardiography
You’ll need to complete the needed clinical externship hours at a local healthcare facility after completing your required coursework.
Despite the fact that diagnostic sonography courses are difficult, Cambridge provides you with the assistance you need to succeed in your career.
Skills needed by an ultrasonographer
Healthcare and other service-industry employment necessitate a diverse set of abilities, ranging from technical expertise (often referred to as hard skills) to effective interpersonal communication (the soft skills). It is vital to have both in order to be a good and well-rounded sonographer.
The following are examples of hard skills required for the job.
- synchronization of the hands and eyes
- Ability to lift, push, and pull objects weighing more than 50 pounds Dexterity to operate equipment
- Anatomy and physiology knowledge
- Pathophysiology knowledge is important.
- Technical findings from exams are read, written, and interpreted.
The following are examples of soft skills needed by an ultrasonographer:
- Compassion and empathy
- Keeping your cool under duress
- Communication and listening skills
- Ethical behavior
- Work ethic that is self-sufficient
- Ability to work as part of a group
What are the Benefits of Diagnostic Medical Sonography?
First and foremost, think about why sonography can be a good option. Any conceivable job option, including sonography, requires knowledge of the prerequisites, perks, and problems. For a variety of reasons, becoming an ultrasound technician is an excellent career choice. These reasons include:
Make a good living: Ultrasound technologists earn among the best salaries among associate degree holders.
Short degree program: Most sonographers have completed an Associate of Science Degree (AAS), which takes around two years to finish.
Strong job market: Sonography is a highly sought-after profession. Over the next ten years, double-digit job growth is predicted.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), diagnostic medical sonographer occupations are predicted to grow by 19 percent over the next decade, resulting in nearly 19,000 new positions. Figures for wages and employment are based on a national average and may differ by location.
Conclusion on How to become an Ultrasonography
There are numerous reasons why this is an attractive career path. For example, the average annual salary is $75,780 (BLS May 2019), which is quite generous for an occupation that typically requires only an associate degree.
Ultrasonographers enjoy working as integral members of a larger healthcare team, creating high-tech images to aid physicians and doctors in diagnosing illnesses, and working one-on-one with healthy and seriously ill patients.
In short, ultrasonographers are critical in providing a comprehensive picture of a patient’s health in order to determine whether or not additional medical care is required.
How to become an Ultrasonography Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
See below for the answers to the most asked questions on How to become an Ultrasonography;
- What are the job prospects for ultrasonographers?
According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of ultrasonographers is expected to grow by 17% between 2016 and 2026.
- What Do UltraSonographers Dress Like?
Ultrasonographers spend their days setting up medical imaging equipment, performing ultrasounds on patients, and communicating diagnostic exam results with medical professionals. Ultrasonographers typically wear clothing that is both comfortable and appropriate for the nature of their work in order to perform each function of their job. Ultrasonographers typically dress in medical scrubs.
Comfortable shoes are essential in this role because ultrasonographers may be required to bend, stand, and lift for extended periods of time.
- What is the purpose of ultrasonography?
Ultrasound imaging uses sound waves to create images of the inside of the body. It aids in the diagnosis of pain, swelling, and infection in the body’s internal organs, as well as the examination of a pregnant woman’s unborn child (fetus).
Doctors commonly use ultrasound in infants to evaluate the brain, hips, and spine. Images must be obtained by lifting and moving patients.