Doppler sonography is a special type of examination that is mainly used to assess the blood flow through the blood vessels. For example, vasoconstrictions, sacculations or occlusions can be determined and their severity assessed. Since it is a special type of ultrasound examination, the method is also called Doppler ultrasound.
In addition to vascular medicine, Doppler sonography plays an important role in diagnostics in the specialist areas of neurology (clarification of fainting fits or a stroke) as well as in gynecology in pregnant women to assess the development of the growing child. Doppler ultrasound can be performed without any preparation and is completely harmless. In most cases, the examination is performed in combination with a conventional ultrasound scan performed at the same time for imaging purposes, which is then also called duplex sonography.
When is Doppler sonography used?
Doppler sonography is used for the diagnosis of various clinical pictures and symptoms that may be associated with damage to blood vessels. Especially in neurology (nerve medicine), the examination serves as an important diagnostic method in the investigation of the causes of various symptoms. The trigger for strokes, temporary loss of vision in one eye and sudden fainting spells can, for example, be a narrowing of one or both carotid arteries.
Doppler sonography can be used to assess whether the carotid arteries are narrowed and how much blood flows through them. Doppler ultrasound may also be appropriate in some cases in cases of ringing in the ears, unclear headaches and dizziness. Other indications for the examination method sometimes arise in pregnant women.
For one thing, the mother’s blood vessels can be assessed, for example in the case of gestational hypertension. On the other hand, it is possible to assess the heart function of the growing child in the womb. Childhood heart defects can thus be detected at an early stage if necessary. The advantage is that, in contrast to an X-ray examination, for example, the child is not exposed to dangers such as radiation during Doppler ultrasound.
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