Become an essential member of the medical team. Training for a technical job in the healthcare field is an ultrasound investment. Sonography is no exception. The Department of Labor provides a job outlook with impressive salaries and continued growth potential.
The Role of a Diagnostic Medical Sonographer
Diagnostic medical sonographers administer patient tests in a one-on-one setting. The high-technology tests that they administer make them champions of early detection for many serious health conditions.
Sonographers are trained to use ultrasound medical technology. These devices use sophisticated, high-frequency sound waves to produce computer-driven images of organs, tissue and blood flow. Doctors interpret the information from ultrasound tests to diagnose and treat patients.
As part of your academic program, it is important that sonographers are knowledgeable in anatomy, physiology, and physics. This will give you a clear understanding of the purpose of a patient’s test and what results the doctors are looking for. With this knowledge, you can make on-the-fly decisions during a test to drive better results. Here is the full scope of the responsibilities a sonographer can expect to encounter during a workday:
- Prepare a patient for their procedure by obtaining and recording their medical history.
- Perform diagnostic procedures and obtaining diagnostic images.
- Analyze if the quality and coverage of technical images to provide results that can make an accurate diagnosis.
- Use independent judgment in recognizing the need to extend the scope of the procedure according to the diagnostic findings.
- Provide an oral or written summary of the preliminary technical findings to the physician.
Areas of Specialization
Your career in diagnostic medical sonography can be specialized to meet your interests and job opportunities in your area. There is a recommended two-year program, but once your certification coursework is complete, you can qualify for positions that interest you by taking credentialing tests in specific concentrations.
Graduates of a CAAHEP-accredited Diagnostic Medical Sonography Program are qualified for the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS) credentialing examinations.
All areas of sonography are covered within Center for Allied Health Education’s program, with a focus on the following specialties:
- Obstetrics/gynecology (OB/GYN) credentialing focuses on ultrasound testing for pregnancy imaging.
- Abdomen credentialing is for program graduates interested in ultrasound work that captures images of a patient’s organs.
In addition, one may choose to seek work in a medical practice or facility that specializes in other areas, such as:
- Echocardiography that studies heart and its blood flow.
- Vascular ultrasound to test blood flow in peripheral blood vessels throughout the body.
- Breast sonography detects cysts and tumors.
- Musculoskeletal sonography testing that focuses on muscles, ligaments, tendons and joints.
Why Choose a Career in Diagnostic Medical Sonography?
- According to the US Department of Labor, the national mean annual wage for diagnostic medical sonographers is $71,750. In the New York tri-state area it’s $72,120.
- There are many industries in which sonographers work, with medical and diagnostic laboratories having the highest concentration of employment. The average annual mean wage varies somewhat by industry:
Medical and Diagnostic Laboratories: $73,400
Physician Offices: $69,450
Outpatient Care Centers: $82,940
Colleges, Universities, and Professional Schools: $77,940
Skilled Nursing Facilities: $75,580
- According to the US Department of Labor, the job outlook is expected to grow an extraordinary 24% from 2014 to 2024, which is much faster than average. It is expected that an additional 27,600 diagnostic medical sonographers will be employed during this time.
For more data from the Department of Labor:
Imaging technology is expected to continue to evolve, making diagnostic medical sonography a solid career choice. CAHE offers a two-year program that is CAAHEP accredited. Financial aid is available for those who qualify.
Learn more about this rewarding career program online or call 718-645-3500 to speak with a representative today.