A 35-year-old member asked:
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are ultrasounds safer than x-rays?

4 doctor answers
Dr. Neeoo Chin
39 years experience Fertility Medicine
Yes: Yes, ultrasound is safer than x-rays. The energy source for ultrasound is sound waves which has been established as safe in limited procedure times during pregnancy. X-ray energy source is radiation which has been established to be detrimental in higher doses to developing in utero babies.
Answered on Dec 6, 2019
Dr. Neeoo Chin
39 years experience Fertility Medicine
Yes: Sound wave energy from ultrasounds are considered to be safe during pregnancies, but radiation energy from x-rays have been found to be detrimental to the developing fetus.
Answered on Dec 6, 2019
Dr. Brian Enggano
11 years experience Obstetrics and Gynecology
Yes: For pregnant women, ultrasounds are safer than x rays because sonograms use sound waves, which do not affect the baby. On the other hand, ct scans and x rays use radiation, which do have risks to the unborn child at very high levels. Discuss this with your doctor.
Answered on Dec 6, 2019
2
2 comments
Dr. Andrew Turrisi
46 years experience Radiation Oncology
Also, may be less sensitive, less specific, and just not usable if there is an air or gas interface or bone between probe and lesion. Transducer positioning can also vary. U/S very useful some indications, useless in others.
Oct 17, 2013
Dr. Joe Golowa
Dr. Joe Golowa commented
18 years experience Interventional Radiology
For adults as well there is no ionizing radiation which although very low can increase risk of certain cancers
Oct 17, 2013
Dr. Michael Gabor
32 years experience Diagnostic Radiology
X-rays: contribute to a slight theoretical increased lifetime cancer risk. Diagnostic ultrasound has no known deleterious effects. All else being equal, then, to the best of our knowledge, US would be considered safer.
Answered on Dec 6, 2019

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Depends: It depends on the problem you are looking for. General rule, x-ray is to eval bones and u/s is to eval soft tissue and solid vs fluid.
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