Abdominal ultrasound is most useful in viewing and evaluating the following organs:
Using an abdominal ultrasound, a doctor can detect gallstones, check the liver for cancers, examine the kidneys for cancers or for blockages in the flow of urine, measure the size of the spleen or the width of the aorta (the body's largest artery), and look for fluid around the abdominal organs.
Ultrasound waves do not travel well through air or gas, so abdominal ultrasound is not useful in examining the intestines. Ultrasound can also be difficult to conduct on patients who are severely overweight or obese. Sound waves weaken as they travel through the outer tissues of the body, and may not reach the organs in a person with excess body mass.
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