An Ultrasound scan is an investigation that uses high frequency sound waves to create images of the inside of a body.

It can also guide surgeons and radiologists during certain procedures as well as monitor unborn babies. 

Ultrasound scans

All patients attending the department for an Ultrasound scan will have received a copy of the Ultrasound information leaflet with their appointment letter.

Where is the Ultrasound department?

The Ultrasound department is located in radiology on Level B of the hospital. You will be required to book in at front reception (although if your scan is after 17:00 or at the weekend, there will be signage for you to follow).

You will then be directed to the waiting area where an RDA, HCA or a sonographer will come out to you. You are invited to take a seat whilst you wait.

For Ante-natal Ultrasound, you will need to attend the Ante-natal clinic which is also on Level B.

We also provide Ultrasound services at Cranleigh Village Hospital and Haslemere Hospital.

Your appointment letter will indicate where your scan will take place.

What do we do?

We perform a wide variety of diagnostic examinations and provide ultrasound imaging for all wards, departments, outpatient clinics and GP referrals.

Our specialist team is committed to delivering a high level of patient care. Our clinical staff consists of radiologists, sonographers and clinical support staff. There may also be students in attendance.

Our specialist imaging services include:

  • Abdominal scans
  • Renal scans
  • Pelvic scans (internal transvaginal and transabdominal)
  • Musculoskeletal Scans (MSK)
  • Paediatric scans
  • Carotid and DVT vascular scans
  • Thyroid/Neck scans
  • Testes scans
  • Interventional ultrasound scans

How should I prepare for an Ultrasound?

Some Ultrasound examinations may require you to fast for a period of time before your scan or to have a full bladder.

Your appointment letter or information leaflet will tell you what preparation is required. Please check your letter to find out which hospital your scan is being performed in and what your specific preparation instructions are.

If a translator is needed, please contact the department with the necessary requirements prior to the appointment.

Asking for your consent

We want to involve you in all the decisions about your care and treatment. If you decide to go ahead with the ultrasound scan, by law we must ask you to verbally consent to the test.

This confirms that you agree to have the procedure and understand what it involves. The doctor that referred you for the ultrasound scan will explain the risks, benefits and any alternative tests.

If you are unsure about any aspect of your ultrasound scan, please do not hesitate to speak to either your doctor, or the sonographer carrying out the scan.

Equally, if you would like a chaperone in the scanning room, please speak to the sonographer who will be able to organise this.

What happens during the Ultrasound scan?

Our ultrasound rooms are dimly lit to reduce the amount of ‘glare’ on our ultrasound monitors.

You may be asked to either sit on the examination couch or lie either on your back or stomach depending on the area to be scanned.

Ultrasound gel will be put on your skin over the area to be scanned. This allows the probe to slide easily and helps to produce clearer pictures.

The sonographer or radiologist will slowly move the probe over your skin while viewing the images on the screen.

Records of selected images will be made which can be viewed later.

You may be asked to hold your breath at times or to change position.

You may be asked to move the limb being examined or the radiologist or sonographer may move it for you to evaluate the anatomy.

Occasionally, there may be a need to press quite firmly in the region where you may be having pain. This will be brief but is necessary in helping arrive at a diagnosis.

After the scan the gel can be wiped off and you will be able to get dressed.

How will I get my results?

You will receive the results at your next appointment with your consultant or clinician.

The practitioner performing the procedure may give you a brief outline as to how the procedure has gone, however a formal report will always be made and sent to the referring clinician.

Ultrasound Guided Injections

It is a small interventional procedure that involves injecting a steroid into the appropriate area using ultrasound to guide the needle.

This injection is a therapeutic procedure, aiming to reduce musculo-skeletal pain relating to tendons, tendon sheaths or bursae.

Before the scan

There are no dietary requirements needed for this scan.

You should wear comfortable, loose fitting clothing for your scan. You will need to remove clothing and jewellery in the area to be examined.

Please ensure you tell us if you have any allergies, particularly to local anaesthetic.

Please make note of your medication and if you are taking Warfarin, or any other blood thinning tablets. Make a note of your recent International Normalised Ratio (INR) levels and call 01483 464150 to let us know.

If you are diabetic, you can still have an injection, but be aware that the corticosteroid may cause a temporary rise in your blood sugar levels.

If you require a hoist, or your weight exceeds 23 stones (150 kilograms) please contact the radiology appointments office when you receive this appointment.

Can I bring a relative or friend?

Yes, however it may not be suitable for a friend to remain in the scanning room whilst you are undergoing the examination.

If you have learning difficulties, please bring a friend or relative with you.

What actually happens during an Ultrasound Guided Injection?

Our ultrasound rooms are dimly lit to reduce the amount of ‘glare’ on our ultrasound monitors.

You may be asked to remove some clothing from the affected area.

Please ensure you wear appropriate clothing to expose the region being examined.

A small amount of ultrasound gel will be applied to the area of concern and the radiologist or sonographer will scan the region of interest and, after discussion with you, will proceed to giving you the injection.

Your skin will be cleaned around the affected area. They will then guide the injection to the appropriate position whilst watching it on the screen.

The injection contains a combination of local anaesthetic to temporarily numb the area and a corticosteroid, which acts as an anti-inflammatory.

The anaesthetic will give a few hours of relief, but the slower acting corticosteroid may take up to a week to take effect.

Warning- it may get worse before it gets better. Once the anaesthetic effect has worn off, the area can become more painful for up to 48 hours before the steroid has taken effect.

How long will it take?

The whole examination will usually take 10-20 minutes.

Whilst we will endeavour to ensure you are seen at your appointed time, sometimes emergencies may have to take priority. Please be patient, but feel free to ask the reception staff if you think that you may have been overlooked.

What happens afterwards?

You should feel absolutely fine, but you may be asked to stay close to the radiology department for 20 minutes to ensure you do not feel any adverse side effects.

You can normally drive home, depending on the site of injection, but it may be advisable to be driven by a companion.

You should keep the injected joint or soft tissues moving gently for the first 48 hours, avoiding heavy or physical work, repetitive movements or your normal aggravating positions.  Take regular pain killers over next 24 hours, if needed.

Where will I have my scan done?

Ultrasound scans are undertaken in the Radiology Department at the Royal Surrey County Hospital or Cranleigh Hospital. The hospital you are being scanned at and the time of your scan will be written on the accompanying appointment letter.

Contact us

For appointments, please phone

01483 464 150