A thyroid ultrasound is an imaging method used to see the thyroid — a gland in the neck that regulates
Ultrasound – thyroid; Thyroid sonogram; Thyroid echogram
How the test is performed
You will lie with your neck extended beyond its usual limit (hyperextended). The ultrasound technician will place a gel onto your neck. Next, the technician will move a wand, called a transducer, over the area.
The transducer gives off sound waves. The sound waves go through the body and bounce off the area being studied (in this case, the thyroid gland). A computer looks at the pattern that the sound waves create when bouncing back, and creates an image. This is similar to SONAR.
How to prepare for the test
No special preparation is necessary for this test.
How the test will feel
You should feel very little discomfort with this test. The gel may be cold.
Why the test is performed
A thyroid ultrasound is usually done when you have a growth on your thyroid gland. The exam can help tell the difference between a sac containing fluid (
The thyroid is of normal size, shape, and position.
What abnormal results mean
Abnormal results may be due to:
Enlargement of the thyroid gland (
Your doctor can use these results and the results of other tests to direct your care.
Additional conditions under which the test may be performed include the following:
- Colloid nodular goiter
Medullary carcinoma of thyroid Multiple endocrine neoplasia (MEN) II Papillary carcinoma of the thyroid Thyroid cancer
What the risks are
There are no documented risks of ultrasound.