What is an ultrasound scan for kidney stones?

An ultrasound scan for kidney stones is a noninvasive diagnostic examination that will produce images which are used to assess the size, shape, and location of the kidneys. Blood flow to the kidneys can also be assessed using ultrasound.

Ultrasound employs a transducer, which emits ultrasound waves at a frequency that is too high to be heard. The ultrasound transducer is applied to the skin, and the ultrasound waves travel through the body to the organs and structures. The sound waves bounce off the organs and return to the transducer. The reflected waves are processed by the transducer and then converted into an image of the organs or tissues being examined by a computer. Sound waves travel at various speeds depending on the type of tissue, such as the fastest through bone tissue and the slowest through air.

An ultrasound gel is applied to the skin of the individual and the transducer to allow the transducer to glide smoothly over the skin and for the better conduction of sound.

What are the benefits of kidney stone ultrasound?

Kidney stone ultrasounds can also help detect:

  • Kidney size
  • Infection
  • Kidney injury
  • Fluid collection
  • Other abnormalities or obstructions
  • Blood flow
  • Tumors or cysts
  • Abscesses

What are the risks of kidney stone ultrasound?

There is generally no discomfort from the application of the ultrasound transducer to the skin. Depending on your specific medical condition, there may be risks. Before the procedure, make sure to discuss any concerns you have with your doctor.

Certain factors or conditions may have an impact on the test results. These may include the following:

  • Severe obesity
  • Intestinal gas
  • A recent barium procedure left barium in the intestines.

How to prepare for kidney ultrasound?

  • Your doctor will explain the kidney ultrasound procedure to you.
  • In most cases, no prior preparation is required, such as fasting or sedation.
  • You may be required to drink at least 24 ounces of clear fluid one hour before your appointment and you should not empty your bladder before the procedure.

What happens during kidney stone ultrasound?

A kidney stone ultrasound can be performed as an outpatient procedure or as part of your hospital stay. Generally an ultrasound procedure of the kidney follows the following process:

  • You may be asked to remove any jewelry, clothing, or other items that could interfere with the scan.
  • You are asked to lie on an examination table.
  • The radiologist will apply a water-based gel to the area that will undergo the examination. The gel will aid the transducer in making firm contact with the part of the body. It also removes air spaces between the transducer and your skin, which can prevent sound waves from passing into your body.
  • The ultrasound waves will be sent through the patient's body using a transducer, a device that emits ultrasound waves.
  • The sound will be reflected off from the structures inside the body, and sound waves will be analyzed by the ultrasound machine.
  • The ultrasound machine will produce images of these structures on a monitor. These images will be saved digitally.
  • Once the ultrasound is complete, the gel will be wiped off from your skin. Any remaining portions of gel will dry quickly. Generally, ultrasound gel does not stain or discolor clothing.

What happens after kidney stone ultrasound?

  • There is no special care required following a kidney ultrasound. You can resume your normal diet and activities.
  • Reports will be available within 24 hours. Radiologists interpret the ultrasound images and provide results accordingly.

Why choose Medicover?

Medicover is the best multispeciality hospital providing round the clock comprehensive care and treatment to patients under one roof. We are equipped with advanced tools and technologies, state-of-the-art facilities, top-notch infrastructure and a team of highly experienced radiologists, and staff who deliver successful outcomes. We have the most advanced technologies and experienced radiologists who perform kidney stone ultrasound with utmost precision.