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What information can a duplex ultrasound test give?

Dr. John C. Lipman, MD
Vascular & Interventional Radiologist

Duplex ultrasound is an imaging test to see how blood moves through arteries or veins in the body. It combines "regular" ultrasound images of the artery or vein in question along with Doppler flow information to look at how fast the blood is moving.

Duplex ultrasound allows a physician to gather information not just about structures in the body, but also how blood moves through blood vessels by combining regular ultrasound with Doppler ultrasound. Doppler ultrasound is capable of analyzing sound waves that are emitted and then bounce back from moving red blood cells. This information is interpreted by a computer to show the speed at which blood cells are moving through a blood vessel. Color Doppler allows one to see which direction blood is flowing and if valves are leaking.

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