Abdominal ultrasound uses high-frequency sound waves to acquire images of the abdominal organs. Unlike x-ray , ultrasound is non-ionizing radiation, so it has no known negative effects on the patient. It is often used in conjunction with other imaging modalities. Ultrasound, x-ray, and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) image the body using different technologies, so each may be helpful in determining different properties of a mass for a more complete diagnosis. Preparation Bowel gas hinders the visualization of the abdominal organs. When a loop of gas-filled bowel lies between the transducer and the organ being examined, an artifact called shadowing is seen on the image and obstructs the view of the organ. Patients who are scheduled for an abdominal ultrasound are asked to fast during the eight hours prior to the examination. This allows bowel gas to subside for optimal imaging. Most likely, the patient will not need to undress for this examination . The patient's shirt will be
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