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Career Story: Ultrasound Technician At A Hospital

Ultrasound Technician At A Hospital

Job Title: Ultrasonographer

Type of Company: I work for a tertiary care center north of Boston and for a private ultrasound company doing high risk obstetrical work in a local community hospital.

Education: AS, Business Administration, Baystate College •• AS, Diagnostic Medical Sonography •• ARDMS Registered Sonographer Ob/Gyn

Previous Experience: I worked in administration for an independent medical exam company. I later worked the front desk of a radiology department in a community hospital, and then became the office coordinator in a radiation oncology department in a community hospital.

Job Tasks: I am responsible for performing abdominal, obstetrical, gynecological, small parts and vascular exams along with interventional procedures including biopsies and drainages and have high-quality technical skills in gray scale, Doppler and color Doppler scanning techniques. I'm responsible for providing preliminary interpretations to the radiologist upon completion of the exam. My skills include working well with patients, co-workers and referring clinicians.

For example, a patient may be pregnant and is at a time in her pregnancy when a fetal survey is needed. I am responsible for knowing how to operate the ultrasound machine to be able to produce optimal diagnostic images to rule out any anomalies and show the baby is developing properly. I have to present my images to a perinatologist (high risk OB physician) and be able to communicate every aspect of the exam while presenting the case.

A typical day on the job in the General Ultrasound Dept. consists of being aware of my daily schedule (8 AM-4:30 PM M-F), being organized and timely getting the exams completed while working with 2-3 other technologists and writing preliminary reports to the radiologist reading the cases that day. I sometimes have to answer the phone and I am responsible to keeping track of patient arrivals and departures throughout the day through a computer program.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of my job is the satisfaction I get from being able to help diagnose patients. I am proud to have the expertise in operating a highly technical ultrasound machine and being able to produce high quality images for the radiologist to diagnose positive and negative exams.

I suppose the worst part of the job is that there are occasionally positive indications of some serious diseases that our patients will have to deal with.

Job Tips: If you have an interest in pursuing a career as an ultrasound technologist, I would suggest getting some volunteer experience in a hospital; either that, or get a part-time job. Being accepted into an ultrasound education program is highly competitive and having completed all the prerequisites with high grades is very important.

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