What is an ultrasound?
This versatile imaging technology uses high-frequency sound waves to produce images of organs and tissues within the body. By capturing images in real time, ultrasound exams reveal the structure and movement of the body's internal organs, such as the heart, blood vessels, kidneys and liver.
Ultrasound can also be used to precisely locate the position of a tumor in order to guide a biopsy or aspiration procedure. For example, ultrasound may be used to mark out the boundaries of a tumor prior to its removal. It can also be used to administer cancer treatments.
Depending on the body part being examined, some types of ultrasound include: abdominal, breast, cardiac, pelvic, prostate, renal, testicular and thyroid. Unlike X-rays, ultrasound exams do not use radiation.
Ultrasound for gallbladder cancer
Usually this procedure is performed by using the ultrasound transducer, or wand, on the skin over the abdomen. However, in some cases, your doctor may want to get a closer look at the gallbladder, and may perform an endoscopic or laparoscopic ultrasound. For these techniques, the ultrasound device is attached to a tube, and inserted through the mouth, or through a small surgical incision, respectively.