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Ultrasound Technician Video: Career Options in Ultrasonography

Ultrasound Technician Video: Career Options in Ultrasonography Transcript

If you have good people skills and like working with complex equipment, you may enjoy a career as an ultrasound technician. Ultrasound techs work with sonography to view internal areas of the body that cannot be seen with traditional x-rays. Trained ultra sound technicians can find work almost anywhere in the medical community and have advancement opportunities in many other areas, including research, education, sales and administration.

Introduction

Ultrasound technicians, also known as ultrasonographers or sonographic technicians, use sound wave technology to see inside the human body. The images they capture help diagnose illnesses and maintain health. Though commonly associated with pregnancy, sonography is used in a variety of medical fields. Common specializations for ultrasound technicians include abdominal sonography, obstetric and gynecologic sonography, breast sonography, neurosonography, cardiac sonography and vascular sonography.

Job Skills and Duties

An ultrasound technician's primary job duties involve working with patients and sonographic equipment. It is essential that techs understand how all of the equipment works so that they can capture images correctly and troubleshoot problems if something goes wrong. Being able to explain the procedure to patients and answer any questions that come up in a knowledgeable and friendly manner is also important. Patients should always be treated with kindness and care.

Training Required

Ultrasonography is one of the few medical fields where a wide range of education avenues are accepted. Ultrasound technicians can receive their training from hospitals, vocational or technical schools, community colleges and universities. Training is also available through the Armed Services. Although one-year programs that result in a certificate are typically accepted by employers, many ultrasound technicians receive their education from a two- or four-year program that culminates in an associate or bachelor degree. At this time, there are no states that require licensure, but many employers prefer to hire employees certified by the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography.

Well Known Jobs Within this Field

Certified or not, ultrasound technicians have many different specializations to choose from. Obstetric and gynecological sonographers are probably the most widely recognized. They take sonographs of unborn fetuses during pregnancy and other diagnostic images of the uterus. Neurologic sonographers specialize in capturing diagnostic images of the head and brain tissue. Abdominal sonographers capture images of various organs in the abdomen. Breast sonographers perform mammograms, which help diagnose breast cancer. A growing number of ultrasound technicians are also choosing to work in therapy.

Conclusion

Ultrasound technicians can enter the field through a variety of means. If you have an interest in anatomy and a desire to work in the medical community, an ultrasonography career might be right for you.


Sources

Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook - Diagnostic Medical Sonographers

http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos273.htm

Wikipedia - Medical Ultrasonography

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sonography

American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS)

http://www.ardms.org

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