Ultrasound for Deep Vein Thrombosis – Upper Limb

A Deep Vein Thrombosis of upper limb Ultrasound is an examination to assess the veins in your arm with the use of ultrasound waves, in particular looking for a blood clot.  You may be experiencing symptoms which may be consistent with a blood clot in the veins of your arm.  There are many conditions which are/could be responsible for your symptoms and it is important to know if they are due to a blood clot. Your doctor requires accurate information as to whether you have a blood clot, the size and position of the clot. This information ensures your doctor can provide the most appropriate treatment.

For more information please see our patient information brochure for this examination.

As there are a range of reasons why you are having this test, it is best discussed with your doctor.

The Procedure

  • You will be taken to a private room. A staff member will explain the procedure and answer any questions you may have.
  • You will be asked to remove some outer clothing from your upper body. To expose your neck and arm.
  • Gel is placed on the area of interest so that sound waves can pass through to the relevant vessels. This is done from the neck to the wrist.
  • At various points the probe will be held still and your arm will be squeezed to asses the blood flow in your veins.
  • You will hear the Doppler ultrasound from time to time as it makes a pulsing noise.
  • The Sonographer needs to compress the veins in your legs during the exam with some pressure, which can occasionally be uncomfortable.
  • The examination will take approximately 30 minutes for a single arm and 60 minutes for both arms.
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