Non-Invasive Vascular Laboratory

A full range of non-invasive tests are available at our in-office Ultrasound Lab, and at the CPMC Vascular Laboratory in the hospital. Patients are examined using Doppler ultrasound techniques that are free of risks and discomfort. These tests allow diagnosis of most known or suspected vascular disorders, and determination of the severity of the disease and the need for treatment of these disorders, including:

  • Aortic aneurysms: a ballooning of the major artery that can cause fatal rupture

  • Aortic duplex scan

  • Duplex scan of peripheral arteries for aneurysms

  • Cerebrovascular Disease: blockages in the arteries to the brain that may increase the risk of stroke

  • Carotid artery duplex scan

  • Transcranial Doppler (TCD)

  • Chronic Venous Disease: Varicose veins and other disorders causing leg swelling and leg ulcers

  • Dynamic duplex scan of the venous valve

  • Deep Venous Thrombosis (DVT): blood clots in the veins that could migrate to the lungs

  • Venous duplex scan of the arms or legs

  • Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD): blockages in the circulation to the arms or legs due to Arteriosclerosis or other diseases, which may threaten the limbs.

  • Duplex ultrasound scan of the extremity arteries

  • Exercise testing for claudication

  • Segmental Blood Pressures of the arms or legs

Other tests:

  • Vein and artery mapping for dialysis access procedures

  • Vein mapping for peripheral vascular or coronary bypass

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What is non-invasive vascular testing?

A. It is the use of diagnostic ultrasound equipment to evaluate arteries and veins within the body, without the need for injections or radiation. The ultrasound examinations are painless and pose no known risks. Vascular ultrasound studies can measure the flow of blood in vessels and the significance of blockages.

Q. What is an Ultrasound ?

A. Ultrasound technology uses sound waves that are converted into visual pictures. A transducer is held against the skin, the transducer emits sound waves, and different tissues within the body reflect the sound waves back to the transducer. A computer transforms the sound waves into images, allowing a visualization of the inside of the body.

Q. What can I expect when I arrive for an ultrasound exam?

A. An exam usually takes 30 -60 minutes to complete. After you fill out the registration form, the technologist will obtain a brief medical history. Depending on the exam, you may be examined while lying on an exam table, or while standing. Water soluble gel is applied to the area of your body being tested. The room is darkened. The technologist will explain all aspects of the testing and give a preliminary impression. The results will be reviewed with you at your follow-up appointment.

Q. Is there any preparation for the exam?

A. Only abdominal exams need special preparation. No food, smoking, gum chewing, or liquids (except a sip of water with medications), eight hours prior to the exam.

Q. Where do I go for the ultrasound testing?

A. The testing will be in the lab in our office. Please arrive 15 minutes prior to your appointment time.