Your carotid arteries are your brain’s primary source of oxygen-rich blood. Blockages or narrowing of these arteries puts you at risk of having a stroke. At SonoBreasts in Santa Monica, California, Jasmine Khorsandi and the team perform carotid ultrasound testing to evaluate the flow of blood through these arteries. Call the Los Angeles area office or book an appointment online today.
A carotid ultrasound is an imaging test that uses sound wave technology to see how blood flows through the carotid arteries. The carotid arteries are the blood vessels on both sides of your neck that carry oxygen-rich blood to your brain.
Carotid artery disease is a common health problem that affects blood flow through these blood vessels because of a buildup of plaque along the walls. That is a condition known as atherosclerosis.
A carotid ultrasound evaluates these blood vessels, looking for signs of narrowing or blockages in the arteries. You’re at a greater risk of having a stroke if you have carotid artery disease.
The team also performs a Doppler ultrasound during a carotid ultrasound, which uses a special tool to evaluate the flow of blood through your carotid artery.
Your health care provider may recommend a carotid ultrasound if you have risk factors for carotid artery disease, such as high cholesterol or high blood pressure.
You may also need it after a transient ischemic attack (TIA), which is a temporary blockage of blood flow to the brain. Having a TIA puts you at greater risk of stroke.
The SonoBreasts team provides instructions on how to prepare for your carotid ultrasound. In most cases, no special preparation is needed. There are no diet restrictions or a need to change your usual medication schedule.
The team, however, requests you come to your carotid ultrasound wearing comfortable clothing and remove any necklaces prior to your test.
Your carotid ultrasound at SonoBreasts takes 10 to 15 minutes. Your sonographer has you lie back on the exam chair and applies a water-based gel to the skin on your neck. The gel improves the movement of the ultrasound transducer and makes the images clearer.
Your sonographer places the transducer on your neck and slides it over your skin to get the desired images. You may feel some pressure but no discomfort during your ultrasound.
Ultrasound imaging is safe and quick and uses no radiation. After your test, you can go back to your usual routine.
The SonoBreasts team provides results from your carotid ultrasound within a week.
Find out more about carotid ultrasound at SonoBreasts by calling the office or scheduling an appointment online today.