The Ultrasonography machine is a tool used in medical imaging techniques to help visualize muscles, tendons and other internal organs. Ultrasounds, as the name suggests, are high frequency sound waves that get reflected off the internal tissues of our body. One can evaluate their size, structure and any other anomalies if present based on the images an ultrasound machine produces.
The basic ultrasound machine is made up of a Transducer probe which makes the sound waves and receives the echoes. This is what the doctor applies to your tummy during pregnancy to evaluate the condition of the fetus. The other part is the Central processing unit (CPU) which is the brain of the machine and does all the calculations. The machine allows a specially trained sinologist to set and adjust the frequency and span of ultrasound pulses. A black and white display screen shows the images from the ultrasound data. The sound waves that get strongly reflected off from solid structures like bones and stones are visible as a black shadow on the screen while the soft tissues like muscles, blood vessels cast grayish white shadows. Ultrasound builds images that are exactly the opposite of those produced by an X-ray.
Diagnostic imaging techniques have enabled doctors to view inside a suffering patient without having to make any cuts. X-rays or radiographs are the most common of such imaging techniques available. An X-ray is usually the first test advised by a physician or orthopaedic surgeon, even in cases which may later require more advanced tests. An ordinary X-ray is a quick, easy and a comparatively cheap test. It may be all that is needed to diagnose or evaluate various problems.
An X-ray machine produces short bursts of X-rays which pass easily through fluids and soft tissues of the body. However, the denser the tissues, the lesser X-rays pass through them. A film is placed behind the body part to be X-rayed. Hollow or air-filled parts of the body show up as black images (e.g. lungs or stomach) and soft tissues (muscle and body organs) show up as various shades of grey, depending on their density. The developed film is studied by an X-ray specialist (radiologist) or by the concerned physician. In cases of X-rays related to bones, an orthopedic surgeon is typically well qualified to read the X-ray himself.
Advances and developments in medical technology have facilitated in making procedures less invasive and more comfortable for patients. The C-Arm X-ray machine, which was introduced by Philips in 1955, is one such example of advanced technology which enables doctors and patients to get faster and more accurate results. A C-arm machine is a medical imaging device that employs the classic X-ray technology with a twist. The name is derived from the semi-circular or C-shaped arm-like projection which connects the X-ray source to the X-ray detector.
A C-arm device consists of a generator i.e. an X-ray source and an image detector. The C-shaped device which connects the two segments of the machine permits movement horizontally, vertically and around the swivel axes. In fact, X-ray images of the patient can be produced from almost any angle. X-rays are emitted by the generator and pass through the patient's body. These X-rays are converted into visible images by the image detector placed behind the body part being X-rayed. C-Arm X-ray machines use intensifiers which magnify the readings making them far more accurate. Thus, lower amounts of X-rays are used to produce images, leading to lesser radiation exposure for both patients and professionals. All image intensifiers have software which is capable of adjusting settings to suit different user requirements, depending on the procedure and body area being imaged.