This test uses sound waves to show an ultrasound picture of the structure of an artery and the amount of blood flowing through it .Gel is applied to the skin, and a probe is placed over an area. A duplex ultrasound helps to tell where in the arteries the narrowing or blockage is and how much it is narrowed. It can be difficult to obtain a picture if you are very overweight or if you have a large build-up of atheroma (fatty material) in your arteries. This test can help to decide which treatment would be most suitable for you.
The most common reason for a venous ultrasound exam is to search for blood clots, especially in the veins of the leg. This condition is often referred to as deep vein thrombosis or DVT. These clots may break off and pass into the lungs, where they can cause a dangerous condition called pulmonary embolism. If the blood clot in the leg is found early enough, treatment can be started to prevent it from passing to the lung. A venous ultrasound study is also performed to: determine the cause of long-standing leg swelling. In people with a common condition called “varicose veins”, the valves that keep blood flowing back to the heart in the right direction may be damaged, and venous ultrasound can help the radiologist decide how best to deal with this condition.
Vascular ultrasound imaging is the examination of the body’s circulatory system.
It is performed for:
DVT Deep vein thrombosis ( blood clot ) in arms or legs
Arteries for flow limiting stenosis (usually leg arteries)
Peripheral veins to assess varicosities and venous reflux (insufficiency)
Thoracic outlet syndrome
Swollen legs or arms sometimes caused by a blood clot.
Pain in the legs after walking a certain distance is sometimes caused by reduced
Arterial blood flow to the legs by disease (intermittent claudication).
Blood clots may form when something slows or changes the flow of blood in the veins.
After a pacemaker catheter has been passed through the vein in the groin
Family history of blood clots
Fractures in the pelvis or legs
Giving birth within the last 6 months
Recent surgery (especially hip, knee, or female pelvic surgery)
Too many blood cells being made by the bone marrow (polycythemia vera), causing the blood to be thicker and slower than normal
You're also more likely to develop DVT if you have any of the following conditions:
Blood that is more likely to clot (hypercoagulability)
Taking estrogens or birth control pills. This risk is even higher if you smoke.
DVTs are most common in adults over age 60, but can occur at any age.
Sitting for long periods when traveling can increase the risk of DVTs. This is most likely when one or more of the risk factors listed above are also present