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How Does an Ultrasound Work?

Whether you’re pregnant and unsure of what your next steps may be or you are in the process of confirming a pregnancy, it’s vital to understand the important role of an ultrasound scan.
Pathways Clinic is here to help you understand how ultrasounds work, when to receive one, and where to find free pregnancy healthcare near you.

How does an ultrasound work?

So, how does an ultrasound work? Ultrasounds provide internal imaging using a device called a transducer, which sends low-level ultrasound waves through the body. These waves either bounce back or echo, depending on the type of tissue it reaches. This interaction will then be converted into a visual image.1

Who should get an ultrasound scan?

Ultrasound imaging technology is used in a variety of medical settings, from diagnosis to surgery. One of the main uses for ultrasound scans is to see what’s happening within the uterus related to pregnancy.
While pregnancy testing is a good first step in determining if you’re pregnant, ultrasound scans are the only way to confirm the viability of the pregnancy and learn information such as the pregnancy’s age and location.
Whether you’re planning on parenting, placing your child for adoption, or considering terminating the pregnancy, an ultrasound scan is a crucial step in making an informed choice. The results will provide you with information regarding your eligibility for various abortion procedures and will notify you and your doctor of any health conditions that require immediate medical attention.

Are ultrasounds safe?

Yes — ultrasounds are safe and do not use any form of radiation.1 

Where can I get a free ultrasound? 

In addition to free pregnancy testing, material help, education, counseling, and more, Pathways Clinic provides free ultrasound scans to those who receive a positive pregnancy test during their appointment.

We believe women should have access to all of the information they need to make a healthy, safe, and informed choice for their pregnancy. Pathways Clinic is here to help you each step of the way.

Schedule your no-cost appointment today!


1. Brazier, Y. (2017) “How do ultrasound scans work?” www.medicalnewstoday.com. Accessed June 29, 2021.

2. Doubilet PM. Ultrasound evaluation of the first trimester. Radiol Clin North Am. 2014 Nov;52(6):1191-9. doi: 10.1016/j.rcl.2014.07.004. Epub 2014 Aug 24. PMID: 25444100.

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