X-rays are not recommended during pregnancy because of
the risk of damage to the
fetus. Because ultrasound is safe during pregnancy, it
generally is used instead of an abdominal X-ray if a pregnant woman's abdomen
needs to be checked.
In rare cases, gallstones may not be found
by ultrasound. Other imaging tests may be done if gallstones are suspected but
not seen on the ultrasound.
ultrasound, a doctor can usually distinguish among a simple fluid-filled cyst,
a solid tumor, or another type of mass that needs further evaluation. If a
solid tumor is found, abdominal ultrasound cannot determine whether it is
cancerous (malignant) or noncancerous (benign). A
biopsy may be needed if a tumor is found. Ultrasound
may be used during the biopsy to help guide the placement of the
Ultrasound is less expensive than other tests, such as a CT
magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan, that also can
provide a picture of the abdominal organs. But for some problems, such as
abdominal masses or an injury, a CT scan or MRI may be a more appropriate test.
Also, these tests may be done if the abdominal ultrasound is normal but
abdominal pain persists.