Are you passionate about becoming a sonographer, and are starting your career in this field? Do you want to know about the day-to-day life and responsibilities of a sonographer and their role in the industry?
This article focuses on guiding you through the role of a sonographer. Go through this post to learn more about the role that sonographers do in their day-to-day life, and the basic skills the sonographers need.
What Is a Sonographer?
A sonographer is also known as a diagnostic medical sonographer. A sonographer is a healthcare professional who specializes in using ultrasonic imaging devices that produce diagnostic images, videos, and scans.
Diagnostic medical sonographers are specialized in different parts of the body. A sonographer also does a complex job with many responsibilities related to performing ultrasounds and dealing with patients.
THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN AN ULTRASOUND TECHNICIAN AND A SONOGRAPHER
Ultrasound technicians and sonographers are two names for the same job. The only main difference between ultrasound technicians and sonographers is semantics. Moreover sonographers and ultrasound technicians are interchangeable.
An ultrasound technician provides monitoring information, and sonographers provide diagnosing and treatment information. Ultrasound technicians work with doctors or medical assistants and sonographers work in specialized areas.
Sonographers are required to complete additional training and certifications. Only, for this reason, many prefer to be a sonographer over an ultrasound technician.
The Role of a Sonographer
Sonographers are medical detectives. Sonographers use ultrasound training, technical skills, and an understanding of the human body to decide whether the structures are normal or abnormal, and can adapt their investigation. This information is then used by doctors to determine the treatment or the next step for the patient.
RESPONSIBILITIES OF A SONOGRAPHER
- Professional sonographers are active in many areas of healthcare and can detect diseases, like cancer and other things, like pregnancy. The main role of sonographers is to create images of tissues and organs, using techniques, like X-ray, MRI, or CAT scans.
- They use ultrasound devices to create images of the internal area of the patient’s body. Sonographers work closely with each patient to explain how the procedure will work, and based on the patient’s medical history, sonographers prepare them for the exam before conducting the procedure.
- The major role of sonographers is to explain sonographic procedures to patients, answer questions, prepare patients by applying the gel to the skin, and position the patients on the table to place the device to send sound waves that bounce back on echo.
- They are responsible for ensuring clear images for diagnostic purposes, and making adjustments to the relevant settings in the sonographic equipment to position the patient accordingly when necessary.
- Sonographers make sure that patients are safe and comfortable during the procedure and monitor the patients continuously during the process. Selecting and examining images to look for differences between healthy and unhealthy areas. They have to determine accordingly if the scope of the exam should be extended or not based on preliminary findings.
- After completing the procedures sonographers should present the sonograms and preliminary findings to the doctors. They have to maintain the appropriate documents of patients and their medical reports.
- They assist doctors and healthcare teams to diagnose different body conditions through the process of sonography. Sonographers also perform medical procedures, like administering oxygen, providing emergency treatments, and taking vital signs. They are also responsible for maintaining and cleaning the sonographic equipment.
SKILLS REQUIRED FOR SONOGRAPHERS
Skills that sonographers need are technical skills and soft skills that sonographers use to excel in their career. Those in this profession need a combination of interpersonal skills, effective work habits, and technical knowledge to operate the equipment such as:
- Ability to multitask.
- Good physical health.
- Attention to detail.
Career Paths for Sonographers
Sonography can be a rewarding career path for professionals. With a sonography degree, you can choose a career in both clinical and research areas. Sonographers are trained in two or three specialties during their time in a DMS program.
A person can choose specialties, like pediatric, cardiology, vascular, and neurology that allow them to incorporate their special interest in a sonography career. They also work independently when performing their work, and are a part of the healthcare teams, doctors and nurses.
Most of them work in hospitals, private doctor’s clinics, and labs. Sonographers can also become an educator, application specialists, and involved in research.
Sonography also does a wide range of duties, and the responsibilities look different each day. If you are confused about what the role of a sonographer is, this article should have given you the answers to your questions.
If you are passionate about becoming a sonographer and are planning to take the SPI exam, make sure to try our free SPI practice test before the exam which helps you prepare effectively.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
1. WHAT ARE THE AREAS OF SPECIALIZATION FOR A SONOGRAPHER?
Specializations are as plentiful as areas of medicine. You can develop skills and become a certified sonographer. Following are some of the popular specializations for sonographers:
- Adult echocardiography.
- Obstetrics and Gynecology.
- Musculoskeletal sonography.
- Abdomen and small parts.
- Breast sonography.
2. HOW DO YOU BECOME A SONOGRAPHER?
Following are some steps you can take to start your career as a sonographer:
- Earn a high school diploma.
- Find an accredited program.
- Pass the national certification exam.
- Become certified as a specialist.
3. WHAT ARE CAREERS SIMILAR TO SONOGRAPHY?
Following are some careers similar to sonographers:
- Medical Appliance Technicians.
- Radiologic Technologists.
- Registered Nurses.
- Surgical Technologists.
- Medical Laboratory Technicians.