Doppler ultrasound: What is it used for?
It is the high-frequency sound waves bouncing off the blood cells in the blood vessels. Color Doppler ultrasound is preferred for monitoring certain diseases, other than pregnancy, as it provides information on the direction and speed of blood flow in the blood vessels. It is performed to examine the blood vessels of the umbilical cord in the baby's umbilical cord. It can also be used to examine the blood vessels in the heart, uterus and brain. It has no known adverse effects and is not a desirable ultrasound method at any stage of pregnancy. Performed in the direction of blood flow and blood vessels, it should not be performed in early pregnancy when blood vessels have not yet achieved the desired clarity.
How is Color Doppler Ultrasound Used?
There is no need for any special preparation for a Doppler ultrasound: you lie down on the exam table and the doctor starts the scan using a gel and a probe. Meanwhile, red and blue colors appear on the screen. The colors indicate the speed and direction of blood flow in the vessels. For this reason, it is a very important device in the diagnostic phase.
What is it used for?
Color Doppler Ultrasound is preferred for the diagnosis of vascular diseases such as;
- Monitoring fetal development and detecting any anomaly during pregnancy,
- Examination of the extremity veins (veins of the arms and legs) (for vein occlusion and varicose veins),
- Examination of renal vessels,
- Examination of carotid and vertebral arteries known as neck vessels
- Detection of tumors or masses occurring in the genital organs, erectile dysfunction disorders (penile doppler ultrasound),
- Examination of vessels in liver disorders
Color Doppler ultrasound in pregnancy
The major reason for using a color Doppler scan during pregnancy is to ensure that fetal growth restrictions and possible abnormalities are detected early. The top reasons for choosing color Doppler ultrasound during pregnancy are as follows:
- To detect Intrauterine Growth Restriction (UIGR),
- To evaluate conditions associated with blood pressure such as eclampsia-preeclampsia and help syndrome
- Suspicion of a fetal anomaly or disease,
- Examination of unequal development of babies in families expecting more than one baby,
- Possible cardiovascular disease in the mother,
- Having experienced a fetal growth restriction in a previous pregnancy,
- Having suffered from a condition such as pre-eclampsia, eclampsia or help syndrome in a previous pregnancy.
When is Color Doppler Performed during Pregnancy?
Ultrasound is a very important test for many families who are expecting a baby and want a clear image of their baby, and for families looking for answers to what is a color Doppler ultrasound.
Color Doppler examination.
- At 12 weeks, the vein called the ductus venosus in the baby's abdomen is evaluated (important for early detection of abnormalities).
- In most pregnancies, duplicate tests may be indicated depending on the baby's development.
- If any developmental delay in the baby is detected at 25 weeks or more, it can be scheduled at any week at the obstetrician's discretion.
- In the third trimester, it may be performed if the baby shows no signs of movement or if there are abnormal findings on the PSN.