Male urinary tract
Female urinary tract
The bladder is an organ made of smooth muscle. It stores urine until it’s released when you go to the bathroom. The most common reason for bladder ultrasound is to check bladder draining. The urine that remains in the bladder after urinating ("post void residual") is measured. If urine remains, there can be a problem like:
Bladder ultrasound can also give information about:
- The bladder wall
- Diverticula (pouches) of the bladder
- Prostate size
- Large tumors in the bladder
Bladder ultrasound doesn’t check the ovaries, uterus, or colon.
This test doesn’t require fasting or bowel preparation. If you are not checking for post void residuals, a full bladder is needed. You may be asked to drink many glasses of water an hour before the exam.
The exam is done as you lay on your back on the exam table. A gel is spread on the skin to help transmit the sound waves. The transducer is placed between your navel and pubic bone. The image is viewed on a monitor and read on the spot. To check bladder draining, you’ll be asked to void. When you return, the bladder will be imaged again.