Job Title: Cardiac Sonographer
Type of Company: I work for a cardiology office that has twelve cardiologists.
Education: AS, Science, Bunker Hill Community College (Boston, MA)
Previous Experience: I worked in a hospital as a secretary in a cardiac unit.
Job Tasks: I am a cardiac ultrasound technician. This means that I take ultrasound pictures of patients' hearts. I can evaluate how well the person's heart muscle is working. I can see all the walls of the heart moving, which means if someone has had a heart attack and it has done damage to the heart muscle, I will see that damage. I can also see the valves inside the heart opening and closing along with the blood flow across the valves. Evaluating the valves is important, because sometimes they don't open wide enough causing restriction and sometimes the valves leak, causing blood to regurgitate instead of flowing forward. I measure the chamber sizes of the heart and see if a patient has an enlarged heart or thickened heart muscle. I report all of my findings on a worksheet and then give this sheet to a cardiologist to analyze. The ultrasound helps the physician to treat the patient with appropriate medications or possible heart surgery.
Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The very best part of my job is that I help the physicians diagnose a patient's illness, which in turn will help the patient feel better. I enjoy interacting with patients and helping them feel comfortable when they come in for the study. Some people like to talk during the test, which is fine with me because I like talking with them.
On occasion the job can get really busy and the physicians will add patients on, which means I may not get out on time. Working in the medical field, you never know when an emergency will come in. It could be lunch time or at 5:00 when I should be going home. This is probably the worst part of the job.
Job Tips: The ultrasound course is only two years long, but it is a very intense course. You have to be willing to commit your time to your studies. The clinical part of this field is difficult, because you go into hospitals and work under another ultrasound technician without getting paid. At the end of your clinical apprenticeship, you will be just about doing a whole study by yourself. Just remember that it is worth it; it doesn't take long and you will be out in the field on your own and actually getting paid for it.
Additional Thoughts: I would advise anyone looking to go into this field, to shadow someone first. Actually anything in the medical field should be job-shadowed, so you can make sure it is really what you want before you study for it.
These schools offer particularly quick info upon request, and we have written detailed profiles for each (click school names to see the profiles).
Request info from multiple schools, by clicking the Request Info links.
As a student at South University, Online Programs you will receive the same quality instruction, variety of learning options and level of service found at the campus locations.
About Brightwood College
Brightwood College offers accelerated programs that combine flexible schedules and professional instruction to create a rewarding learning experience for individuals focused on gaining the skills for specific careers. Brightwood College is owned and operated by Education Corporation of America.
Turn your talents into a career at nationally recognized and accredited Platt College.
San Joaquin Valley College - A Private Junior College.
Ultimate Medical Academy (UMA) offers industry-relevant knowledge and training for in demand careers in healthcare.
American Career College (ACC) offers hands-on training that will prepare students for careers in the healthcare industry at three campuses in Los Angeles, Ontario, and Orange County, California.
The Secret to Getting Ahead is Getting Started
The inside stories from people actually working in the field.
Click a story title to show the story, and click the title again to hide it.
Career Stories are concise, real-world career overviews written by people relating their personal career experiences and wisdom. They provide invaluable insights and mentoring advice to students and career changers.
Most stories include:
Please also see our detailed information about Diagnostic Medical Sonographers , including: