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Transvaginal Ultrasound (Endovaginal Ultrasound)

Ultrasound is an imaging test. It uses sound waves to form pictures of your organs that appear on a screen. Ultrasound is often done with a probe placed on the abdomen. Transvaginal ultrasound uses a special probe that is placed directly into the vagina. This gives a clearer picture of the uterus, ovaries, and other pelvic organs. This test can be used to assess symptoms such as pain and to check for problems. In pregnant women, it is used to check the fetus (unborn baby). Ultrasound imaging is very safe and uses no ionizing radiation. Ultrasound imaging is very safe and uses no ionizing radiation.

Woman lying on back on exam table with feet in stirrups. Healthcare provider is holding probe between woman's legs and operating ultrasound machine.

Preparing for Your Test

  • You may be asked to empty your bladder before the test.

  • Tell the sonographer (specially trained technologist who does the test) what medications you take. Mention whether you have had pelvic surgery. Answer any other questions the sonographer asks. Your answers will help the sonographer tailor the test to your health needs.

During Your Test

  • You may change into a hospital gown. You'll then lie down on an exam table with your knees raised (as you would for a pelvic exam).

  • The sonographer will use a slender hand-held probe (transducer) shaped like a tampon. The probe is covered with a sterile sheath and nongreasy gel. It is then placed inside the vagina. In some cases, you may be asked to insert the probe yourself as you would a tampon.

  • The sonographer moves the probe to get the best picture. You may feel pressure. If you feel pain, let the sonographer know.

Be aware that although the sonographer can answer questions about the test, only a doctor can explain the results.

After the Test

Before leaving, you may need to wait for a short time while the images are reviewed. You can go back to your normal routine right after the test. Your doctor will let you know when the results of your test are ready.


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