What are the Different Sonographer Careers?

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  • Written By: Rachel Burkot
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 17 January 2019
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Sonography is a discipline of health care that involves preparing a patient for an ultrasound. Sonographer careers are in high demand as technological advances contribute to the growing use of ultrasounds at hospitals and doctors’ offices. This field requires education and training in the medical field, and once a student becomes a sonographer, there are many career paths that may be taken.

To become a sonographer, a person may get either a two-year associate’s degree or a four-year bachelor’s degree. An interest in and understanding of the sciences is required. College courses will focus on topics such as biology, anatomy, physiology, medical ethics and physics. Part of the training requires fieldwork experience at a hospital, doctor’s office, clinic, laboratory or health care facility. After the education and training are completed, students can begin to pursue sonographer careers.

The most common work environment for sonographers is in a hospital. Labs and doctors’ offices employ the majority of sonographers who do not work in hospitals. Medical sonographer careers usually place a strong emphasis on diagnostic medical sonography. This involves the production of visual images of the body’s internal structures and processes, which are called sonograms. Sonograms, or ultrasounds, are most often associated with pictures of babies in the womb, but they can also be useful for diagnosing diseases or illnesses.


Sonographer careers usually involve the sonographer acting as an ultrasound technician. The ultrasound tech is responsible for obtaining the patient’s medical information and preparing him or her for the sonogram. This includes positioning the patient, preparing the equipment and spreading gel on the patient’s body. The sonographer should report anything unusual to the physician.

Sonographer careers can emerge from one of several disciplines in the field. Ophthalmologic sonography focuses on the eyes, and these sonographers take detailed images of the lens, retina and blood vessels. Abdominal sonography investigates the spleen, pancreas, gallbladder, kidneys and liver. Neurosonography takes ultrasounds of the brain and nervous system. Brain disease can be discovered quickly in fetuses using this procedure, which transmits waves and frequencies to study the brain.

Obstetric and gynecologic sonographer careers are perhaps the most widely known. With this type of medical sonography, the female reproductive parts are examined to study a fetus in the womb. The baby’s gender and state of health can be easily determined using this type of sonography.

Most sonographer careers involve long hours, requiring the sonographer to be on call during off-hours. The job often involves travel to patients’ homes for specialized or individual care not performed at a hospital.



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