Interventional Ultrasound

Interventional Ultrasound covers a broad category of diagnostic and therapeutic procedures, including biopsies, cyst aspirations, and drainage of fluid collections in the chest, abdomen and subcutaneous tissues.

Preparation for Your Exam

In general, it is preferred to avoid eating solid food and liquids other than water for 6-8 hours prior to the examination. Routine medications may be taken. If you are a diabetic, consult with your doctor regarding insulin dose.

During the Exam:

How long will it take?

Interventional procedures may be preceded by diagnostic Ultrasound scans. Because of the wide variety of procedures that may be performed, the time may vary from 30 minutes to 90 minutes. Certain procedures, such as biopsies of deep abdominal organs, aspiration of fluid collections in the chest, and certain other procedures may necessitate a post-procedure observation period of 1-3 hours to ensure patient well being.

Will it Hurt?

There may be some discomfort associated with these procedures. Many can be performed with local anesthesia (similar to Novocaine used by dentists). More involved procedures may require administration of painkillers and/or anti-anxiety medications. The most involved procedures generally will involve insertion of a small intravenous line and monitoring by our Radiology nursing staff in order to administer medications intravenously. Every effort is made to minimize any discomfort during the procedure.

After the Exam

You may have some mild soreness after the procedure, but, generally, this is relatively minimal. If medications have been administered, you may feel somewhat drowsy during the recovery period and you should make arrangements for someone else to accompany you and to bring you home after the observation period, since operating machinery, such as driving, should be avoided for several hours after the procedure.

Getting Your Results

The results of the scans will be available to your physician on the day following the examination. If biopsies, cultures or other tests are performed on the material obtained during the Ultrasound interventional procedure, these results may take several days to be completed. You may call your doctor to obtain the results.

Making an Appointment

When you call, we'll ask you for basic information such as your Social Security number. We'll ask you what type of test you need to schedule, and will schedule you for the best possible time. If you need to reschedule your exam, you can call us back and we'll be happy to arrange a better time for you.

When you call to schedule your exam, we'll also give you important information about preparing for the exam. If your doctor has scheduled the exam for you, and you have questions regarding the preparation or the procedure itself, you can call the imaging department where your procedure is being performed (please refer to our 'Locations' page for exact phone numbers).

Your physician will have several tasks to perform:

Complete the necessary paperwork to order the test (similar to writing a prescription for medication)

Fax, mail, or place the order in our computer system

Call us to schedule a test for you or have your physician call us directly

Obtaining Your Images

Exam Image Availability

DRC's state-of-the-art PACS technology offers you immediate access to the images of your radiologic exam. No longer does your physician have to wait to have copies of your films made. Although we can still print your X-ray on film for you with just 24 hours notice, your physician can now review your exam images immediately via the Internet. We offer safe and secure web access for your physician through Specialty Networks. Your privacy and HIPAA compliance is assured.

Images on a CD

If your physician prefers, the digital images from your study can be written to a CD-ROM, giving him/her a permanent record that can be accessed easily and quickly via a computer. CDs hold multiple studies and take up significantly less space than the traditional film in the brown envelope. A 24-hour notice is also requested to create this digital record for you.

Versatile Image Viewing Options

Internet access to your studies for your doctor is available immediately after your pictures are taken. Copies of your images can be obtained on a CD or on film with 24 hours notice.

Both Internet and CD viewing offer your physician the ability to digitally adjust your images in ways not possible with traditional X-ray film. Using the computer, the image can be made lighter or darker or zoomed for better visualization of a particular portion, for example. Your physician can fine-tune the images to accommodate his or her preferences.

Obtaining Copies of Your Images

To receive a CD or film copies of exam images, please follow these steps:

1. Call the location where your examination was performed (please refer to the locations page). Please provide your name and other identifying information along with the study being requested. With 24 hours notice, we can either create a CD-ROM or print a film for you. Our representative at the imaging center will provide you with the times available to pick up the exam.

2. To protect your privacy, please be sure to bring a picture ID when you pick up your CD/films, you will have to sign a Medical Images Release form when receiving your CD/films. If anyone else picks up your CD/films for you, please be sure to give him or her your written authorization to release your information to him or her.

3. If you would like us to send a copy of your study to a physician outside the DRC system, we will need a signed release from you along with the study you would like sent and the receiving doctor's name and address. You can fax or deliver us that release in the form of a signed letter at the fax number listed on the locations page. Please allow us plenty of time to send your films.

Any Costs

Currently the first set of films is provided at no cost to the patient. There is no charge for CD-ROM's and, of course, the Internet is always free.