Ultrasound has many uses in the fertility evaluation, especially the vaginal probe ultrasound. Using the vaginal probe, sound waves are “bounced” from the transponder and picked up by a receiver creating a “pattern”. The internal organs and structures are seen on ultrasound as “shadows”.
Vaginal probe ultrasound is a “mainstay” of assisted reproductive technologies (IVF) because it allows the fertility specialist and/or the ultrasound technician to visualize follicular development on the ovaries. The number and size of the follicles are determined and this information is used in FSH dosage adjustments. Ultrasound is also used to measure the width of the endometrial lining and to guide egg retrieval. Ultrasound has many other uses including documentation of the fetal sac, visualization of the fetus, scanning abdominal organs, and many others.