What Does a Medical Sonographer Do?
If you like learning new technology and helping people, here’s a job to consider. Medical sonographers use specialized equipment to direct high-frequency sound waves towards a particular part of the body to create ultrasounds or sonograms. The echoes from those sounds are used to create images of structures inside the patient’s body.
The most common sonogram is the one expectant parents see of their baby inside the womb. The technology is also used by cardiovascular and vascular technologists to take a closer look at specific areas of the body, including the abdomen, chest, heart and blood vessels.
Job growth for this profession is expected to be 19% from 2018 to 2028.
- Explain the process to the patient and answer questions
- Prepare the patient for the scan
- Operate the equipment
- Select images or record video to show to a doctor
- Keep proper medical records of each patient
- Adjust and maintain equipment
The level of post-secondary education and training needed depends on what specialty you’d like to work in. Fields like magnetic resonance imaging, radiography and sonography require an associate degree and certification from the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonographers (ARDMS) or the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT). To go into a more specific area of interest – like bone densitometry and mammography – requires extra classes as well as clinical experience. Finally, to become a registered radiologist assistant (RA) will require a bachelor’s degree, clinical experience and ARRT certification.
- Have good people skills
- Are physically fit and able to assist and move ill or disabled patients
- Are detail-oriented
- Are interested in working with complex machinery