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Renting an ultrasound machine can be a cost-effective option for your business. Ultrasound machines produce images of internal body structures, which in turn diagnose specific medical conditions. Example applications include obstetrics and gynecology, cardiology and cancer detection.
The basic components of an ultrasound machine include the transducer probe, transducer pulse controls, a central processing unit (CPU), a display, a keyboard/mouse, computer unit, and a printer. The transducer probe is the most important part of an ultrasound machine. The probe generates the sound waves and in return receives the echoes.
Know the type of ultrasound machine you need.
Knowing the purpose for your ultrasound machine is crucial before renting. The following are standard ultrasound machines found in the medical field.
A basic ultrasound machine uses a transducer to omit high frequency sound waves. Those sound waves bounce off structures inside the body. Most applications need only a basic ultrasound machine. The basic ultrasound machine takes interior images of the body from applying the transducer outside the body. The recordings of images and sound show through the display.
If you need an ultrasound machine for early-stage pregnancy abnormalities or ectopic pregnancies, prostate issues in men, or pelvic examinations, an internal scan is the best choice. Internal scans, or the need to insert a transducer inside the body, requires a transvaginal/transrectal scanner. This type of scanner fits to the patient’s internal regions.
If you are working in obstetrics, a 3D or 4D ultrasound creates a 3 or 4D image on a display that is helpful for determining a fetus’ sex. The difference between them, is that 4D allows a 3 dimensional picture in real time. Many hospitals and clinics already use 3D ultrasounds. There has been much research and debate about potential risks involved in both ultrasound types. The Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville has been using 3D ultrasound machines to identify peripheral nerve blocks during knee and ankle surgeries.
If you have limited space, a portable ultrasound machine is a great choice. Portable ultrasound machines can come on wheels allowing easy maneuvering. The size and resolution of the display can be of varying sizes, maximizing your space requirements.
Muskuloskeletal ultrasound machines scan bones and muscles to ensure correct diagnosis of injuries. These types of machines are for athletic-related applications.
Doppler ultrasound machines detect heartbeat and blood flow in fetuses. They also help detect early-stage breast cancer. This type of ultrasound machine measures the movement and speed of objects in the body.
Echocardiograms, or cardiac ultrasound machines are used to take images inside the heart by using Doppler signals. They also measure blood velocity.
Know your the probe you need.
Two most common probe types are linear and sector. Linear probes create a higher resolution image allowing better distinction between tissues. They also function at different frequencies when scanning tissues of varying depth. Sector probes offer an image with a wider field of view. Though both types of probes can be used internally as well as externally, the linear probe is more often used for internal applications.
Know if you need other ultrasound machine features
Some features to consider are:
- The ability to capture an image
- Battery power: having a power back-up, or “stand-by” mode will reduce the risk of outage
- Portability and ergonomics
- Weight and dimensions of machine
- Type and amount of gel required for your specific application
Common manufacturers of ultrasound machines include: Esaote, SonoSite, Volcano, Mindray, Samsung, General Electric, Boston Scientific, Siemens, Philips, Toshiba, Fukuda Denshi.