Diagnostic ultrasound is an imaging technique that uses sound waves at high-frequencies to produce images of structures and organs within your body. Ultrasound imaging in gynaecology is used to examine the female pelvic organs, without the need for invasive techniques, including: the uterus, the cervix, the endometrium, and the ovaries. The images can provide valuable information for the diagnosis and treatment of a variety of diseases and conditions.

Most ultrasound examinations are completed using an external sonar device, though some ultrasound examinations involve an internal sonar device. There are two approaches for pelvic ultrasounds:

  • Trans-abdominal ultrasound: It involves scanning the lower abdomen and it provides an overview of the pelvis. This assessment can help regarding the examination of large pelvic masses extending into the abdomen, which cannot be observed through trans-vaginal ultrasound.
  • Trans-vaginal ultrasound:It is an internal ultrasound and involves scanning in the vagina with the ultrasound probe. It results in better and clearer images of the female pelvic organs, because the ultrasound probe lies closer to these structures.

In regards to the gynaecological aspect an ultrasound may be required in the investigations of abnormal bleeding, heavy or painful periods, infertility, pelvic pain especially during intercourse, irregular or infrequent periods, and postmenopausal bleeding.