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Date Created: 12/20/15
MrUltrasoundTechnician.com Mr Ultrasound Technician Dot Com- A Day In The Life Of An Ultrasound Tech Ultrasound technicians, also known as ultrasound techs, take diagnostic images with the use of sound waves of abdominal, obstetric, gynecological and neurological areas of the body as ordered by a patient’s physician. The images can be recorded on video or as still shots for the physician to exam at a later time. This is done in order to help a physician properly and more accurately diagnose patients underlying health issues. An ultra sound technologist will need to collect a patient’s medical history, adjust and position the patient’s body for the most optimal viewing position as well as talk the patient through the procedure and answer any questions that patient may have. During the procedure the tech will look for problem areas and note any findings that are cause for concern for the physician to follow up on. Positions for this career are in high demand and steadily growing. One of the reasons for this is due to the pay rate, education requirements, length of required education and job placement possibilities. Ultrasound schools offer two year programs in order for individuals to become certified with the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography and earn their associates degree in diagnostic medical sonography. A student must have either a GED or high school diploma in order to enroll in a sonographer program. What You’ll Learn on your Way to Becoming an Ultrasound Tech While enrolled in an ultrasound technologist college program, a student will learn by hands on experience with the ultrasound equipment, learn how to operate and maintain said equipment and complete classes on the following studies: • Medical Terminology • Patient positioning • Proper patient protocol • Equipment maintenance • Safety regulations • Anatomy and Biology • Physiology • Abdominal Sonography • Gynecological Sonography • Sonography physics Students will also need to learn how to properly interact with patients, be educated on how to easily explain the procedure to patients and be able to answer any questions a patient might have. The technician will also work closely with physicians and will need to carefully follow any delegated instructions. These classes will also help prepare students for the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography exam that can be taken once the initial courses have been completed. Ultrasound technologists are not required by the state to become certified by the ARDM, but students will be enabled to find easier employment with certification completion. There are several specialties for you to choose from, such as: • ophthalmologic sonography • abdominal sonography • neurosonography • obstetric and gynecologic sonography Opathalmologic sonography deals with the eyes, giving an accurate eye measurement and also allowing for prosthetic lens placement and can also help to detect irregular blood vessels in the eyes or tumors. Abdominal sonography deals with the pancreas, spleen, gallbladder, kidneys and liver. Neursonography involves taking diagnostic images of the brain as well as the nervous system. A fetus’s brain can also be scanned to look for abnormalities or other health issues. Neurosonographers use different frequencies in order to examine the brain. Obstetric and gynecologic sonography is one of the most common types of sonography and deals with the female reproductive system and echocardiography and vascular technology. This type of sonography is used to take images of fetuses still in the womb, in order to insure the health of the infant as well as to determine the sex. You may have asked yourself “how much does ultrasound technician school cost?” Typically, the cost of education for this career is 75$-500$ per credit. If attending a four year sonographer school, the tuition will be much more costly, than if you were to attend a community college. At a two year sonographer college the annual tuition can run 3,000$ if attending a two year sonographer school the tuition can cost around half the price of a four year school. Some four year colleges offer sonographer programs with a total cost of 37,000$ for the whole program, including materials. If you choose to attend a vocational school, always research the school to find an accredited one, where credits are transferable. Also, some vocational schools that offer classes can be more expensive than the same courses offered by a community college. When choosing a sonography college, also look into their success rate with graduates that have completed their program. There are also some programs available for online ultrasound technician schools. These online courses are convenient for those students who also work or have other commitments. While online courses can help you towards your goal of becoming a tech, you will also need to spend a certain amount of time in the classroom in order to complete the program. The classroom time is devoted to the hands-on aspect of learning how to operate and maintain sonographer equipment. Some of the top accredited online colleges that offer ultrasound tech programs are: University of Phoenix, Argosy University, American intercontinental University and Kaplan University. These online programs costs are similar to those of vocational schools and will vary depending on the school and whether or not these schools offer financial aid. Some vocational schools, such as ITT Tech offer their students career counseling and job placement opportunities after graduation. Most ultrasound schools will offer financial aid to those low income students that qualify. Some of the top schools for this field, based on the amount of students enrolled in ultrasound technician programs are: • Miami Dade College • Houston Community College • Northern Virginia Community College • Lone Star College system • Austin Community College • Valencia community College • Broward College • University of Iowa • Nova Southeastern College • Tidewater Community College • Florida Community College, Jacksonville • El Paso Community College • College of DuPage • Palm Beach Community College • George Washington University • Oakland Community College • Central New Mexico Community College • Orange Coast College • Montgomery College Where you can make the most annual salary as an ultrasound technologist? After obtaining an associate’s degree a graduate can find employment in various medical settings, such as: • Hospitals • Family practices • Medical imaging centers • Medical clinics • And research labs • Veterinarian offices The salary rate for an ultrasound tech will be based on experience as well as where you live as the salary will fluctuate from state to state. States such as New York or California, where the cost of living is higher, will have the higher paying sonographer salary. The median annual salary for a sonographer is 64,000. The projected growth rate for this particular field is 44% between the years of 2010-2020, which is much faster than average for all occupations. The environment in which you work will also play a part in how much you will earn. Places such as hospitals or diagnostic imaging centers will offer a higher annual salary than that of a small private practice of medical clinic. Ultrasound technologists that have several years of experience in the field will also be more likely to earn top salary potential.
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