Sonographers use imaging equipment that non-invasively emits sound waves directed towards internal organs, blood vessels, tissues and other structures. A sonographer’s job description entails using this specialized technology but can also include interpreting these images and assisting the rest of the healthcare team.
Ultrasound technician job duties vary across specialties, from monitoring the development of a fetus in utero to evaluating the passage of blood throughout a patient’s vascular system. Some sonographers will also assist with interventional or minimally invasive procedures for either diagnostic or therapeutic purposes, from ultrasound-guided surgeries to biopsies.
Ultrasound technicians differ from Radiology Techs who perform X-rays, MRIs and CT scans in that their equipment employs sound waves instead of radiation. While an ultrasound technician’s job description differs from that of other medical imaging professionals, their work often compliments one another. For example, a radiologic technician will often take a mammogram of the breast in conjunction with a sonographer performing an ultrasound.
Ultrasound technicians may work in hospitals, doctors’ offices, diagnostic laboratories, outpatient care facilities, universities and other healthcare sites.
Duties include, but are not limited to:
- Explain the ultrasound procedure to patients and answer any questions they may have.
- Maintain ultrasound equipment and sterilize the room in which the procedure takes place.
- Spread the ultrasound gel on the surface of the patient’s body covering the internal area being imaged.
- Perform the ultrasound ensuring the transducer (probe) is capturing images of every angle/section that must be assessed.
- Evaluate the images for their quality, but also to interpret what was captured in the image.
- Present images and preliminary findings to physicians and the healthcare team.
- Maintain patient records and add medical notes related to the ultrasound procedure.
- 1-2 years recent work experience as a Sonographer
- ARRT, ARDMS and/or CCI certification
- State License (if required per state)
- Current BLS
- Current TB Screen
- Valid Photo Identification/Driver's License
- Successful completion of a Background Check and Medely's screening process