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Skills Needed for a Job in Diagnostic Medical Sonography

April 22, 2014 General 0 Comments

Skills Needed for a Job in Diagnostic Medical SonographyWith the increased use of technology in the medical field, careers in providing diagnostic medical sonography to patients have also grown. Here's a look at the skills you'll need to work in the field and possible employment opportunities.

Training You'll Need to Work in the Field

To work in the diagnostic medical sonography field, you must learn how to use many types of sophisticated computer imaging equipment. You must also learn how to fine tune your analytical skills so you can understand the images you're taking. You must also be able to identify different parts of the body, particularly vital organs, so you'll need to be knowledgeable about anatomy and physiology.

What You Can Expect to Do

Working as a medical sonographer, you will be responsible for making sure the equipment you are using is clean and properly maintained. You must also know how to properly use the equipment to take the images you need. You also have to be comfortable working with patients in a very private environment, including being able to thoroughly explain to a patient the type of test you will be performing on them.

Additionally, once you've taken the images, you need to make sure they are detailed and clear. After all, you have to provide physicians with enough information so that they can give the patient a proper diagnosis as well as chart a path to treat any possible illness or injury.

Finally, the images you have taken need to be properly labeled, scanned and filed in a patient's folder or database for future reference. Consequently, being organized is a very important component of this job, too.

A Variety of Employment Opportunities

Working in the diagnostic medical sonography field, you may have the opportunity to work as a sonographer for a diagnostic center that does a variety of imaging tests. Or, you could work for a hospital running scans on incoming patients. You could also work in more specialized facilities using your skills analyzing image results.

Diagnostic laboratories specialize in obstetrical or gynecological patients, which includes pregnant women as well as those who have gynecological or breast problems. You could also work for a lab that specializes in taking images for neurosurgeons, where you will focus on a patient's neck, brain and spine.

Many orthopedic practices that deal with broken bones or torn ligaments and muscles often employ their own in-house sonographer so that images can be taken as soon as patients come into the practice.

Your Skills Are Vital

Ultimately, making patients comfortable while they are undergoing a diagnostic medical sonography test is very important. Often, the machinery is big and can be intimidating. Other times, patients are nervous about the test and may even be in pain. Once you've gained a patient's trust, it is important to operate the machine correctly every time. You don't want to have to repeat a test on a patient just because the image you took wasn't clear, especially if the patient is uncomfortable in the first place.

Finally, your ability to analyze the results and report your findings to a physician or medical team is important. If the images you take are even slightly off, a patient could be misdiagnosed, which could delay the important treatment they need to receive to get on the road to recovery.

Photo credit: MorgueFile


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