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What is this scan for?


A stroke is caused by a sudden blood clot in the artery that interrupts blood flow to the brain known as carotid artery atherosclerosis. The carotid arteries are major blood vessels in the neck that supply blood to the brain, neck, and face.


What does this scan show?


In this scan, ultrasound can be used to measure blood flow in the carotid artery. It shows any areas of narrowing, or stenosis of the carotid arteries that could lead to a stroke or other conditions related to blood flow due to narrowing in the arteries. It also identifies plaque deposits particularly the internal carotid.


The Ultrasound Scan Procedure


In this ultrasound, a Doppler probe placed against the skin reflects sound waves off the carotid artery, and a computer constructs images on a screen. During the ultrasound scan the sonographer will place a warm water-based gel on the area to be examined, and will then press firmly on the skin with an ultrasound probe, moving it around until they have obtained the desired images. The ultrasound scan has no known risks and is usually pain free. When the scan is completed the gel can be wiped off easily using tissue.


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