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Ultrasound scan

An ultrasound scan uses high frequency wave sounds to capture an image of inside your body


An ultrasound scan uses a probe that emits high frequency wave sounds to produce detailed images of an organ inside your body. You can't hear the sound waves because they are so high, but they bounce off parts of your body, creating echoes that are received by a prove and turned into a moving image. An ultrasound is performed by a radiologist, a medical doctor who specialises in performing a variety of scans to diagnose and monitor treatment for many conditions. 

An ultrasound scan can be used to monitor an unborn baby, diagnose a condition, or guide your consultant during certain procedures. It can be used to look at all soft tissue structures and blood vessels, but it can't look at bones in detail (an X-Ray, MRI, or CT scan is required for this). There are several different types of ultrasound scans. The three main types are:

External ultrasound scan

During this scan, the probe is moved over your skin

Internal ultrasound scan

The probe is inserted in your body, most commonly vaginally

Endoscopic ultrasound scan

The probe is attached to a long, thin, flexible tube (an endoscope) and passed further into your body

When will I get my ultrasound results?

Results will usually be sent to the doctor who referred you within two days of your ultrasound scan. 

An ultrasound is something that will be recommended by your consultant, at which point our team will arrange an appointment for you. 
If you think you may need an ultrasound and you aren’t speaking to one of our consultants yet, book an initial consultation using our online booking portal. If you need an ultrasound, they will arrange it for you at a later date.

The cost of an ultrasound with Circle Health Group depends on the type of ultrasound you have and where you have it.

Our flexible payment options help you spread the cost of your payment across a time period that suits you. We offer fixed-term monthly payment plans over one to five years with no deposit required. If you decide to pay over 10 months, you will pay interest-free. If you are paying for a longer period, you will pay 14.9% APR.

If you have private health insurance, your treatment will usually be covered by your provider. Speak to your insurer directly to find out.

An ultrasound scan does not use X-Rays. The ultrasound waves are delivered by a small handheld sensor, which is similar to a microphone. 

For some procedures, you might be asked to fill your bladder beforehand by drinking plenty of water. For other procedures, you might be asked not to eat or drink anything for up to four hours before the test. Your consultant will give you advice on this and ensure you are informed at all times.

The examination will be carried out by a consultant radiologist. Usually, an ultrasound procedure takes between fifteen minutes and half an hour, but this depends on the type of examination you have.

To begin, you will be asked to lie down on a couch. Your consultant will apply some cold gel to the area of your body they are scanning – this enables the sensor, which is passed gently over your skin, to pick up the sound waves and an image of the part of the body being scanned is produced. The gel may be cold.

The probe is connected to a monitor that displays images of inside your body in real time.

Your results will usually be sent to the doctor who referred you within two days of your ultrasound scan. 

When you choose to go private with Circle Health Group, you can expect:

  • Flexible appointment times and locations to fit your routine
  • The freedom to choose which hospital and consultant suit your needs
  • Personalised, consultant-led treatment plans tailored to your individual needs
  • Comfortable and safe private facilities maintained by expert multidisciplinary teams
  • Support by the same compassionate clinical team from beginning to end
  • Affordable, fixed-price packages with aftercare included
  • Flexible payment options to help you spread the cost of your care

If you would like to learn more about an ultrasound, book your appointment online today or call a member of our team directly on 0141 300 5009.

Content reviewed by Circle in-house team in October 2022. Next review due October 2025.

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