Thinking of becoming a Sonographer. Any advice?

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neelu, in Los Angeles, California

28 months ago

echo tech in Lucerne, California said: hello? This is my first time on this forum an I love my job as an echocardiographer. I,m typically give 1 hr per pt. 8 to 10 studies a day at an office setting but they usually only take 15 mins, the pay is great. Only go to an accredited school becauce it will be difficult to get a job; unless you have a "hook up". I consider it a very unique profession that most people haven't the slightest idea about. If anybody has any questions please e-mail me and I,ll get into the details. P.S. I hope this remark was posted.

hi, im new to this forum ,i wanted to know if echographer has good job outlook and which college do u suggest to join in california

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maritza in Hawthorne, California

28 months ago

echo tech in Lucerne, California said: hello? This is my first time on this forum an I love my job as an echocardiographer. I,m typically give 1 hr per pt. 8 to 10 studies a day at an office setting but they usually only take 15 mins, the pay is great. Only go to an accredited school becauce it will be difficult to get a job; unless you have a "hook up". I consider it a very unique profession that most people haven't the slightest idea about. If anybody has any questions please e-mail me and I,ll get into the details. P.S. I hope this remark was posted.

Hi I noticed you lived in California . I am interested in emailing you because I have a lot of questions. I am currently attending Santa Ana college and I want to get accredited for sonography. Thanks your help would be much appreciated

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Kari in Conroe, Texas

27 months ago

spbiskup in Clarkston, Michigan said: I will say if you are thinking abouut sonography don't do it. The job sucks if you can even find on. I have been doing it for four years and am sick and tired of it already.

Whats so bad about it?

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neelu in Los Angeles, California

27 months ago

i wanted to pursue sonography/ echocargiodgraphy. pl could anyone help in telling the job prospects for both as a new tech after graduating. which place in us has openings for begingers

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chandler in Urbana, Illinois

27 months ago

maritza in Hawthorne, California said: Hi I noticed you lived in California . I am interested in emailing you because I have a lot of questions. I am currently attending Santa Ana college and I want to get accredited for sonography. Thanks your help would be much appreciated

Hey, i read your post on the forum. my e-mail is chandlerbrwn@yahoo.com. I had to leave northern california last august and I currently live in Illinois for a hospital position.

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lamli in Detroit, Michigan

26 months ago

Just recently decided to got back to school and Im torn between nursing and sonography. I been working as a cna for the last few years and really know the field but it can be so stressful for nurses.I have a hard time with the death and dying and struggle with math. Sonography seems more laid back and patients are in and out with similar pay. It seems ideal but just worried about finding a job.Can anyone offer any advice or if there are any graduates from michigan that have been successfull in finding employment please let me know

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ali212 in San Diego, California

25 months ago

Hi...I have an interview with UCSD sonography program. It is a certificate hospital based program. Would anyone be able to help me with interview questions? Or if anyone has i.terviewed at UCSD that would be sooooo helpful. Im very nervous so any help would be great!

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worx in Phoenix, Arizona

25 months ago

People have been sold a lot of dreams with various professions.
Everything is glorified, and they get sold on wanting to be a sonographer.
Once they get started, they buy into the whole subculture in school. Being in or being out.
But the market is very saturated. Schools tell students that YOU will do better than others out there, YOU will be better than THEM...and they buy into this stuff.

No one is NOT better than someone with a real degree from a real college or a university who has experience. Those little trade schools aren't the same.
Telling you that you are GOOD is just a way to keep you going here. But in reality, a lot of people are good. The internet and other sources provide a lot of ways to learn now, too.

You hear all of the same stuff. How all of the babyboomers are going to retire. How predictions say they will need more sonographers. How healthcare reform will increase the number of sonographers needed... How medical jobs will always be there despite any kind
I am sure all of the ones spewing propaganda about the ultrasound job market will try to counter this. They always do. After all, they are making big bucks off of selling dreams.

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worx in Phoenix, Arizona

25 months ago

If you want to go into ultrasound, look at the job market nationally. Go to sites like Advanceweb, ultrasoundjobs.com, and more. Look at the jobs, read the copy. See how many are just pool, registry, or per diem positions. You can't live off of that.

Hospitals only hirer a handful of sonographers. Many only have a couple. Outpatient is usually one per site. Mobile is a few. So, there aren't a lot of places for sonographers to work.
Because the market is so saturated, this is why all of the jumping through hoops now. Long ago, no one cared if a school was accredited. Most education was through hospital-based programs, to begin with. You didn't have schools with shop class down the hall.

All of the accreditation and such are just money makers. It supports a whole culture, and yes, they are making money off of YOU.

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careerchange in Ann Arbor, Michigan

23 months ago

angie in Rochester, Michigan said: I am going to Jackson Community College and u can take all the classes online before the clincials! They have a lot of different sites to choose from plus they offer general , vascular or cardio!

How do you like the program? What is your background previous to entering the program? Were you accepted right away? I know they only accept 25 students per year. What did you score on your application? Please, any info is appreciated!

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Applying in Tampa in Largo, Florida

21 months ago

Hi I have been interested in Sonography, I have always
Had an interest in Cardiac. I have an interview at Hillsborough Community College HCC in Tampa, FL.
Does anyone have any advice on the area. I read the curriculum and it is general. It is a two year associate.
There is one other accredited program in Palm Harbor that looks like they have echocardiography ultrasound. This place seems to be 3 times the price for general which is 18 month and the echo is 3 times as much and 13 month. I am changing careers and have a Bachelors in Biology but doesn't matter other than I
Have the prerequisites done for HCC. Those of you who do echo or are going for echo, did you do general first?
If so do you have to go another year and do a program that is 22,000 for
Echo ( which this one is). I'm not sure which direction to go
In and both deadlines are soon. Financial
Aide is a must for me. It seems like there are more
Echo jobs in this area. Im assuming echo programs are long and expensive and not
Just a few more Classes after graduating general sonography.
I don't have anyone to talk to about all this. I really don't want to spend all the time, big money and
Not find a job and if I do, not like it. Any input/ advice is appreciated. I like
The direct honest talk on here. Thanks in advance.

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Karry in Massachusetts

21 months ago

There are options. It shouldnt be that expensive. My community college estimates it about $9000 for 2 years. Its all covered until financial aid. If you have a bachelors you cannot get financial aid anymore ( I think) Im doing general and after that my school offers certificates in echo or cardiac and vascular. Or you can always be trained on the job and have enough exams to take more registry tests They dont allow us here to do cardiac then do a general certificate. Thats why I did general first.

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Cristin in Vancouver, British Columbia

21 months ago

KelsyCreek in Bellevue, Washington said: Hello everyone.

There are some mixed reviews on here!! I am currently in an Ultrasound program and will answer the first post as best I can.

What is the typical day like?
From what I understand the "typical day" varies from site to site ( hospital site vs clinical site). Depending on how busy your site is, and what specialty you choose, you could work an 8-12 hour shift with anywhere from 20 minute to hour long appointments.

Hi Kelsy,

Thanks so much for sharing all this information! I am thinking of making a career change and also about applying to the Sonography program at Bellevue College to begin in the fall of 2014. I am a little worried about the timing because I would really like to get pregnant in the next three years. I would love to know if you think going through the program as a mom of a small child would be do-able or if being pregnant during the second year would be okay. How many hours per day of class is it during the first year? And what is the class schedule typically like?

Also wondering if you found a job right away and how you are doing with it all.

Thanks for your help!

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Applying in Tampa in Largo, Florida

20 months ago

Hi largo Fl, I'm tampa too.I'm in the exact same boat, need guidance. BS Biology, just did interview HCC. Want to do Echo. I was hoping echo was easy to specialize in but doesn't seem that way. eneral does not seem for me. It seems physically demanding and to be honest exams I don't want to do.I've always wanted to do echo but didn't know it was a seperate program and general does not have any echo in it.agree with seeing more echo jobs in the area. I don't know what to do. No echo, 2 years and $12000 is a lot 4 HCC. CFI Palm harbor Echo has a bad reputation and expensive. Scary what I have heard and read. I will fill u in. Btw, I need financial aide too, HCC FInanAide person was not helpful.I read CFI can get you money, but it may not be worth it and you may be left with nothing after spending $25,000 people said online.Going to check out CFI but heard bad things from friend of a graduate, the echo neighbor (went to Santa Fe College)that had Students from there do clinicals at her work. & reviews online All saying Waste of money, students not given experience and if they find them a clinical site(some didn't) Were made to feel like idiots because school didn't prepare them and they didn't know what they were doing. looked up school reviews online & read even worse things on CFI. My echo friend said the same that they weren't prepared and students were saying ad things. Her and her office were annoyed. This backs up what I heard about employers not respecting the school or hiring graduates.
I really want to go there because Echo is what I want. no other echo like you said.
Did group Interview make you think twice about HCC, he did to our group and it was'nt an interview at all. It was to tell us how difficult it is to do the program and to graduate. That some people's
Spouses leave them because of them having no time to do anything but study. Crazy "interview" he said 85% of like class of 18 graduate. Also graduates from August only half are employed:/ Help

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Sharon in Memphis, Tennessee

20 months ago

If you want to get into this field, be willing to move. Especially if you live in an area with a few schools that offer sonography/ultrasound techs. Currently, the field is flooded in a lot of areas, and I actually expect that it will be difficult to find a job in the long run.

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mary in Anaheim, California

18 months ago

I am a high school graduate and will obtain my bachelor in one more year. Can anyone tell me how to qualify and how to apply to take the SPI exam and ARDMS exam?
I have taken general physic at cal state fullerton. But I have not go into any trade ultrasound college to get my certificate due to so many scams nowsaday. I am so confused by many people telling me that trade schools scam many graduate student with a big debt. So I wonder if I can take the SPI test first. Then, I might volunteer for a year in a clinic to get some experiences about ultrasound.

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Dontbelieveit in Crazyhorse, Indiana

18 months ago

Amanda in Reno, Nevada said: I'm unhappy because hospitals take advantage of Sonographers. We are always so short staffed and doing the job of 3 people, I had to move across the country away from my family just to find a full time job, and we are not compensated well at all for what we do... that is for work or call.
What would I do differently? I would have never went into Ultrasound in the first place! CT, General X-ray, MRI, Nursing... thats where it's at. I'm currently going back to school for a much better career, where I'm respected.

People think our career is some fun thing, where we get to scan babies all day long but it's much more than that (exposed to body fluid and vaginal blood, getting vomitted on, peed on ect). We do Scrotal Ultrasounds, Vascular ones, Abdomen, Thyroid, OB and Vaginal Ultrasounds, and Rectal Ultrasounds for Prostate scans. The stress alone takes a big toll on you and the honeymoon phase of the job burns out fast. Take it from me... DO NOT GO INTO THIS FIELD.

Good post. When these people think sonographers are "unhappy", they aren't aware of how employers work people hard and burn them out. They have no clue, until they get into the system.

If they think scanning babies is fun, if they miss something, or do not demonstrate something correctly, they will find out how hard it really is. The schools make this all sound like a cake walk. They just memorize protocols. The students don't realize they are EXAMINING anatomy and the docs only see what you show them. You have to know what affects other things, and make that call when the patient is on your bed.

I am tired of these schools painting this field like it is some kind of easy job.
All of the saccharine perky posts that sound like squeaky voices and how they are going to be the next "super tech". That term. Who would call themselves a "super tech"...as if the other techs are no good.

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Dontbelieveit in Crazyhorse, Indiana

18 months ago

Sharon in Memphis, Tennessee said: If you want to get into this field, be willing to move. Especially if you live in an area with a few schools that offer sonography/ultrasound techs. Currently, the field is flooded in a lot of areas, and I actually expect that it will be difficult to find a job in the long run.

I have moved several times, and not to places I wanted to be.

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Abrie in Pretoria, South Africa

18 months ago

echo tech in Lucerne, California said: hello? This is my first time on this forum an I love my job as an echocardiographer. I,m typically give 1 hr per pt. 8 to 10 studies a day at an office setting but they usually only take 15 mins, the pay is great. Only go to an accredited school becauce it will be difficult to get a job; unless you have a "hook up". I consider it a very unique profession that most people haven't the slightest idea about. If anybody has any questions please e-mail me and I,ll get into the details. P.S. I hope this remark was posted.

Hi I'm first year radiography therapy but I want to go over to sonography,I was wondering can sonographers open like their private practise?

Thank you very much

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RubyBlue in Henderson, Nevada

18 months ago

echo tech in Lucerne, California said: hello? This is my first time on this forum an I love my job as an echocardiographer. I,m typically give 1 hr per pt. 8 to 10 studies a day at an office setting but they usually only take 15 mins, the pay is great. Only go to an accredited school becauce it will be difficult to get a job; unless you have a "hook up". I consider it a very unique profession that most people haven't the slightest idea about. If anybody has any questions please e-mail me and I,ll get into the details. P.S. I hope this remark was posted.

Hi
If you have time would you please e mail me with your e mail address. I really need to ask you a few questions. Time is of the essence. I am starting school in a couple of weeks and i have to choose a modality. Either echocardiographer or cardiovascular tech. Which would pay better and what chances do i have to get a job in either one if i am over 55? Would appreciate chatting with you

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RubyBlue in Henderson, Nevada

18 months ago

echo tech in Lucerne, California said: hello? This is my first time on this forum an I love my job as an echocardiographer. I,m typically give 1 hr per pt. 8 to 10 studies a day at an office setting but they usually only take 15 mins, the pay is great. Only go to an accredited school becauce it will be difficult to get a job; unless you have a "hook up". I consider it a very unique profession that most people haven't the slightest idea about. If anybody has any questions please e-mail me and I,ll get into the details. P.S. I hope this remark was posted.

Would love to get your e mail address. I am going to be starting school in a couple of weeks and have a couple of important questions i would like your opinion on

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K.Lynn in Terre Haute, Indiana

18 months ago

I will be going to a Community College soon. I am thinking about studying to be an Ultrasound Tech. I did however, read some reviews that several Sonographers are not happy with their career. For the ones with experience could you please shed some light on your opinion of the job and would you recommend someone taking 2 years out of their life to educate themselves for this career? Is there job openings right out of school and is the pay pretty decent? Also since I haven't started school yet my 2nd option is EchoCardiography. Does anyone have any experience with that?

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Hobo2012 in California

17 months ago

It's an interesting job. Expect to work all shifts and weekends as well ,that is if you are lucky enough to find a job at all.

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Roger in Oakland, California

17 months ago

Well, different settings have different protocols. A 45-60 min per patient for echo seems to be right. I can do a full carotid study in 15-20mins... but again, it is skill based and also what you need to do in the windows you have. Some settings totally push their techs, while some are the opposite. I work in at children's hospital and it gets busy. The cool thing is I see pathology and the repairs.

If you do your research, ultrasound can be broken down to many aspects.

I absolutely love echocardiography. It is super interesting. If you dont want to working with patients that are sick, then you dont need to be in the medical field. Additionally, I work as a pediatric echo tech, so on top of that, you have to love kids and know how to deal with the wide spectrum of that. Pediatric echo takes on a different mindset compared to adult echo, and as mentioned the wide spectrum from fetal (if you do fetal echos) to preemies to teenagers, to adults that have repaired hearts, people with chemo, people with blood disorders, people with syndromes...

Being in cardiology, you can further your career too. You can go invasive such as cath lab or ep lab.

While I dont use it, I learned and am registered in vascular ultrasound and have trained in both venous insufficiency and transcranial Doppler.
---------------------------------------------------------------
You can also learn the other modalities of ultrasound, MSK is a new modality and is pretty interesting.

Regardless, after school, you have a skill.

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Roger in Oakland, California

17 months ago

As for Job opportunities,

Nothing is guaranteed after school, but as I mentioned, you will have a skill set you can apply. I believe the first year out of school is tough, as many employers want experience.

I was super fortunate to get a position out of school, but only because I had some pediatric experience and they couldn't find someone with 2-5yrs experience to fill the position.

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Applegirl89 in Florida

17 months ago

Yes, it is very difficult to get that first job in ultrasound. It took over a year to find one that I wouldn't have to move for. It's not worth moving if the position isn't full time ad most of the ultrasound jobs out there it seems are just that. I am a per diem tech and I hate it after only a few months. The pay is good and it's quick money but it sucks not having a normal schedule or a consistent income (then again I can't imagine working where I do full time. I don't like the hospital I work for). There's nothing more horrible than getting called in 3 times a night (and in the wee hours of the morning) and then having to work all weekend and be on call. It's not what I thought I would be doing at this point in my life. Still not able to stand on my own two feet at 24 years old. If I could do it all over again I wouldn't have wasted my time and money on something that I'm not passionate about. My advice is to do your research and really get a feel for what a tech goes through on a daily basis. Check out hospital settings and diagnostic center settings. If it's still something you want to pursue, do it but be willing to relocate for full time.

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Roger in Oakland, California

17 months ago

Applegirl89 in Florida said: Yes, it is very difficult to get that first job in ultrasound. It took over a year to find one that I wouldn't have to move for. It's not worth moving if the position isn't full time ad most of the ultrasound jobs out there it seems are just that. I am a per diem tech and I hate it after only a few months. The pay is good and it's quick money but it sucks not having a normal schedule or a consistent income (then again I can't imagine working where I do full time. I don't like the hospital I work for). There's nothing more horrible than getting called in 3 times a night (and in the wee hours of the morning) and then having to work all weekend and be on call. It's not what I thought I would be doing at this point in my life. Still not able to stand on my own two feet at 24 years old. If I could do it all over again I wouldn't have wasted my time and money on something that I'm not passionate about. My advice is to do your research and really get a feel for what a tech goes through on a daily basis. Check out hospital settings and diagnostic center settings. If it's still something you want to pursue, do it but be willing to relocate for full time.

Sorry to hear of your situation applegirl89. Being in the bay area of california and knowing the climate for jobs around here, I was for sure I would either be working per diem in adult echo or full time as a vascular tech. But I had an idea of going to each hospital in my area and handing out resumes. Did that for 3 days (luckily I was stopped by Children's and they liked what they saw), but my next plan was to go to So Cal and hand out resumes to each hospital as well. Then to WA and then to Vancouver BC. The places I would love to live and have family there. I was willing to move, but only because I did not want to wait for a position to open up.

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Abrie in Cape Town, South Africa

17 months ago

Hello I'm a 1st year radio therapy student and considering going into ultrasound.Is it possible once one is qualified to open your own practice?A lot of people is negative because each person thinks the next job is "the Perfect" job but how is ultrasound,concering time,pay etc.?

Thanks enjoy your day

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Pete in Irvington, New Jersey

16 months ago

Reading some of these posts can be downright depressing. That being said I want to clear some things up. I have been an RVT for 8 years and scanning for 12. I have no college degree just a mess of college credits I went to a non-accredited trade school. I work in two different places and have not worked a weekend or past 6pm in the last 5 years that being said. There are very few consistencies in the US field where you live, the facility you work/ apply to, male / female, what you scan, license , experience, etc all have huge impacts on your overall situation / experience. Going to an accredited school will only make a difference when sitting for your registry and sometimes when applying for your first job. After that it comes down to having your ARDMS and experience. After those two things how you do on your interview both verbally and technically are the most important. It has been my experience that most techs new and old treat US as a job rather then a career. This is a huge mistake and I'm sorry but I will not explain the difference we should all know this. The one thing I have always loved about the healthcare field is that it is hugely based on experience in most cases. In other words you gotta earn it fancy degrees have little meaning once in the field unless you are aiming for management which is all well and good. To further enforce my point Columbia med center is one of the most respected hospitals in NY and possibly one of the most respected on the east coast I know personally several techs there with staff positions FT that went to a trade school and 2 that like me have no official college degree. What they do have is a long list of stellar references, ARDMS licences, and experience. Ultrasound is a tough field especially the first 5 years it is certainly a tough job and more often then not you will be abused or taken advantage of to some degree

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Pete in Irvington, New Jersey

16 months ago

....the only reason we as techs are abused / taken advantage of is because when broken down the money we make represents only a small portion of the reimbursement that our employer makes so the more we do the more they make. While that can at times ruin the experience the fact that this scenario exists also presents us with a slightly higher then average job security which in this day and age really does matter. Forgive the long rant, but to get back to my point......if you want to be an US tech great go for it! Find a school that works for you. If like me you Dont have a college degree the you should definitely look for an accredited one it will make things easier. Scan every chance you get then scan some more it is impossible to scan to much while in school or on your internship. Learn the different cell between a job and a career. Prepare yourself to work harder the you imagined, anything worth having is difficult to obtain. Get your ARDMS license , network and while this is a personal opinion Do Not go to your interview in scrubs!!!!! Wear a suit! While ultimately this may be your uniform its simply unprofessional for an interview and while you all may not agree in my experience it matters! I could go on for days with this regardless stay focused, stay determined, stay hungry and you will get what your after!

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Erica U in New Jersey

16 months ago

[I graduated from an accredited program last August, and I am still not working. I have 3 registries (abdomen, ob/gyn, echo) and I am working on my fourth (vascular). I love ultrasound, especially echo/vascular, but I, unlike most people, do not want to work full time. I will take any part time job or perdiem job, but no wants wants to hire new sonographers without experience. It is really frustrating because we'll never get experience if never given an opportunity. I cannot work during the day full time because I have young children, who are homeschooled as well. I'll take anything in the evenings, nights, weekends, but just cannot do full time during the day. Maybe 2-3 days during the week, but not every day. Any of you seasoned sonographers have any advice or suggestions?

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Roger G in Oakland, California

16 months ago

Roger in Oakland can you please email me rgc41510@gmail.com

You are not seeing things. My name is also Roger and I also live in Oakland which is why your name jumped out at me. I'm applying to a local school and I would really appreciate if you answered a couple questions for me. Thanks a lot!

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Heidi in Hayward, California

16 months ago

I'm a new grad from a CAAHEP accredited program here in the Bay Area and was lucky enough to be hired right out of the program. I think location is a huge component as to the likelihood you will get hired right out of school. There are quite a few job listings here in the Bay Area and most are willing to hire a new grad out of an accredited program because they know you have gone through all of the proper training.

I believe you either love ultrasound or you hate it. I've thankfully found a career I absolutely love and feel so lucky to be a part of. It combines my love of patient care with my artistic nature (scanning), as well as my interest in the human body. My program director told us all on our first day that we are NOT merely picture takers despite what many people believe. Many radiologists and doctors rely on us to tell them what we see, what's normal and what's abnormal. We actually play a large part in a patient's diagnosis. You definitely want to be sure you are up for the challenge of medicine before committing yourself to a very intense program.

My biggest piece of advice is that anyone wanting to pursue this field, please do so with a CAAHEP accredited program. Please do not play a sickeningly amount of money for some funky unaccredited program because it's easier to get into or whatever. You will end up regretting it. After all, if you were sick and needed an ultrasound, wouldn't you want a competent sonographer who received top notch training?

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bambrah84 in Cleveland, Ohio

16 months ago

Hi there,

i really need help with these question.

1. Why does the position that ur applying for as of cardiac sonographer appeal to u?

2. Have u ever had a patient challenging situition?

Right now i only these 2 questions. I have had many phone call interviews and i think i get to nervous. Everytime they have new questions to ask me. So i guess thats how i kind of screw up.

I would really appreciate if u help me with these questions. thank u once again.

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bambrah84 in Cleveland, Ohio

16 months ago

KelsyCreek in Bellevue, Washington said: Hello everyone.

There are some mixed reviews on here!! I am currently in an Ultrasound program and will answer the first post as best I can.
2. What made you interested in pursuing a career in Ultrasound (or Radiologic Technology or Medical Imaging)?
3. What did you learn from your classroom and clinical experiences during your educational program?
4. Why are you interested in this position?
5. What are your strengths and weaknesses as they relate to this position?
6. Why are healthcare and helping people important to you?
7. How comfortable are you operating medical imaging equipment and learning to use new equipment?
8. Describe a challenge you faced during your clinical and how did you overcome this?
9. Why did you leave your last position? (if you were employed previously)
10. Describe how you are able to remain organized and detail-oriented in a fast-paced environment?
11. How comfortable are you with medical terminology?
12. Which medical imaging discipline are you most passionate about and experienced in?
13. How would a past employer, clinical supervisor or an instructor describe you?
14. Do you work well as part of a healthcare team?
15. Describe a time where you disagreed with a colleague and how did you resolve this?
16. Do you value continuing education and if so, what areas would you like to further study?
17. How does this position fit into your long term career plans?
18. What makes you different from our other pool of applicants?
19. How important is patient confidentiality?
20. Describe your greatest achievement.

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Roger in Oakland, California

16 months ago

bambrah84 in Cleveland, Ohio said: Hi there,

i really need help with these question.

1. Why does the position that ur applying for as of cardiac sonographer appeal to u?

2. Have u ever had a patient challenging situition?

Right now i only these 2 questions. I have had many phone call interviews and i think i get to nervous. Everytime they have new questions to ask me. So i guess thats how i kind of screw up.

I would really appreciate if u help me with these questions. thank u once again.

Well, if you are in the medical field and do ultrasound already, these are almost common. They wouldnt ask you why applying for cardiac sonography if you are an echo tech already.

The second question is always asked. Again, if you work in the medical field, and in ultrasound, you are gonna have difficult patients. I work in pediatrics, so it is part of the territory. But just keep it professional and explain the procedure.. that is all you can do.

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Sugie in Riverbank, California

16 months ago

NUNU2MICKEY in Taylor, Michigan said: CAN ANYONE TELL ME WHAT PROGRAM IS ULTRASOUND TECHNICIAN FALL UNDER I LIVE IN MICHIGAN AND EVERYTIME I TRY TO LOOK IT UP AT A COMMUNITY COLLEGE OR UNIVERSITIES NOTHING COMES UP THIS IS SOMETHING THAT I FEEL I'LL LOVE DOING.

I'm working on getting into the Ultrasound program as well. I'm not sure if you've already have your answer to this question. If not, most schools I've searched have it under Diagnostic Medical Sonography. And yes, you want to check the CAAHEP website for an accredited program. Different schools have different prerequisites, therefore, I would not be surprised if different states have different qualifications as well. Hope this helps. Best of luck to you.

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APPB in Tucson, Arizona

16 months ago

Hi Everyone. I am also looking into getting into ultrasound. I have a few quick questions for someone already in the profession if they have time to answer.

1) Why is it so important for the school to be CAAHAP accredited? There are only three schools in all of AZ that are. Two that are impossible to get into and one that has the WORST reputation. If the a trade school allows me to still be registered why do they have to be accredited?

2) I would be okay with dealing with blood or something occasionally but if I am doing this for a profession with a bit of a weak stomach will I not be able to hack it? I am hoping to do more cardiovascular than vaginal. Do you really ever get much of a choice?

3) What are the best parts of the job and the worse?

If you would be willing to talk through email, please post one on here for me to contact and I will reach out. Any advice that can be offered would be greatly appreciated. Thank you. : )

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Applegirl89 in Florida

16 months ago

I work per diem at a hospital and we have to do everything except hearts. Most of what I do is vascular (carotids, legs, arms) and general sonography (renals, pelvics, scrotals, abdomens, thyroids.) If you go to a larger hospital, a lot of times they will have a separate vascular department. The hospital I work at is very small so I have to be able to do both and we have a diagnostic center side of the hospital. The procedures are not for the squeamish. They're not super gutty. But you will see blood and bodily fluids (like with paracentesis or thoracentesis.) The thing that I don't like about my job is that I frequently have to work weekends and am on call all night. There is no consistent income as a per diem tech. Also the radiology department where I'm at is not very efficient. It's sort of a mess. The best part is the money, without a doubt. I can get called in and be there for maybe 30 minutes but still get paid automatically two hours at time and a half so essentially three hours. It's quick money but I would much prefer a set full time schedule and when you are just starting out, that's something that you won't find necessarily right away especially if you are not able to relocate.

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Roger in Oakland, California

16 months ago

APPB in Tucson, Arizona said: Hi Everyone. I am also looking into getting into ultrasound. I have a few quick questions for someone already in the profession if they have time to answer.

1) Why is it so important for the school to be CAAHAP accredited? There are only three schools in all of AZ that are. Two that are impossible to get into and one that has the WORST reputation. If the a trade school allows me to still be registered why do they have to be accredited?

2) I would be okay with dealing with blood or something occasionally but if I am doing this for a profession with a bit of a weak stomach will I not be able to hack it? I am hoping to do more cardiovascular than vaginal. Do you really ever get much of a choice?

3) What are the best parts of the job and the worse?

If you would be willing to talk through email, please post one on here for me to contact and I will reach out. Any advice that can be offered would be greatly appreciated. Thank you. : )

1. If the program in non accredited, sitting for the registries (mainly ARDMS)is a no go unless you fit into one of the pre req pathways (check their website).

2. You will be in a hospital setting, getting called to go to many places, emergencies and operation rooms, plus people who just has surgery. You will be in close contact with patients... expect blood, spit, open wounds , lice, scabies...

3. Best part is being in a position that you can go many places with (for me, pediatric echo). The worse.. emotional situations. Trauma injured kids, donor organ studies, and seeing the family while they are at their saddest. It is still hard for me to see families after their child has passed. But this is the medical field. You see the sad, but you see the good too.

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APPB in Tucson, Arizona

16 months ago

Applegirl89 in Florida said: I work per diem at a hospital and we have to do everything except hearts. Most of what I do is vascular (carotids, legs, arms) and general sonography (renals, pelvics, scrotals, abdomens, thyroids.) If you go to a larger hospital, a lot of times they will have a separate vascular department. The hospital I work at is very small so I have to be able to do both and we have a diagnostic center side of the hospital. The procedures are not for the squeamish. They're not super gutty. But you will see blood and bodily fluids (like with paracentesis or thoracentesis.) The thing that I don't like about my job is that I frequently have to work weekends and am on call all night. There is no consistent income as a per diem tech. Also the radiology department where I'm at is not very efficient. It's sort of a mess. The best part is the money, without a doubt. I can get called in and be there for maybe 30 minutes but still get paid automatically two hours at time and a half so essentially three hours. It's quick money but I would much prefer a set full time schedule and when you are just starting out, that's something that you won't find necessarily right away especially if you are not able to relocate.

Hi Applegirl,
Thank you for your response. Would you be willing to talk more through IM or email? I set up a yahoo account just for this. The email address is curiousultrasoundgirl@yahoo.com. I promise if you contact me I will keep your info private. I just have so many questions and I don't know anyone in this profession. Incase you prefer not to email here are a few additional questions;
1) do you have to work in a hospital? Is it less invasive or gory for lack of a better word if you try and work in an imaging center or doctor's office?
2) What is a paracentesis and thoracentisis?

Thank you again and I hope to hear from you on here or through email. : )

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APPB in Tucson, Arizona

16 months ago

Roger in Oakland, California said: 1. If the program in non accredited, sitting for the registries (mainly ARDMS)is a no go unless you fit into one of the pre req pathways (check their website).

2. You will be in a hospital setting, getting called to go to many places, emergencies and operation rooms, plus people who just has surgery. You will be in close contact with patients... expect blood, spit, open wounds , lice, scabies...

3. Best part is being in a position that you can go many places with (for me, pediatric echo). The worse.. emotional situations. Trauma injured kids, donor organ studies, and seeing the family while they are at their saddest. It is still hard for me to see families after their child has passed. But this is the medical field. You see the sad, but you see the good too.

Hi Roger,
Thank you for responding to me. Would you be willing to talk through email? My email address is curiousultrasoundgirl@yahoo.com. Incase you don't want to talk through email here are few more questions:
1) Do I HAVE to work in a hospital?
2) Why do you have to deal with transplants, ect? I thought you just take images and your job was done? Sorry if that is a nieve thought. You can only research so much on this job on the internet. I tried to job shadow but I currently don't have medical insurance so the hospital that is willing to sponsor me can't let me come in right now.
3) So this job is or can be just as gory as someone who is a nurse?
4) I am thinking of getting into this field because I want to do something that matters and also to be honest, the money. I don't want to be a nurse because I don't want to have to deal with death, blood, bowels, etc all day everyday. Is being an ultrasound tech as bad?
5) How do you deal with the trauma kids or dying patients? Do you somehow compartmentalize? I am an extremely emotional person. I could not handle dealing with death EVERY SINGLE DAY. : (. I would be a wreck 24/7.

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Roger in Oakland, California

16 months ago

1. You might find work in a clinic setting, like a doctor's office. But if you want to be a great scanner, see pathology, even build a good network, I feel a hospital offers more.

2. Transplants are part of the game. Just because someone is repaired, they still need to be check on. For instance, heart transplants with echo, we look at how the heart is functioning, but also look at the heart muscle as it gets thicker (steroids).
For general or vascular ultrasound. What if a person had a kidney transplant? You have to know what you are looking at and where might have made the connections in the arteries. But also if any kidney disease increases (all transplant patients have to take a ton of meds, and they are not meds to make you healthy, they are meds to keep you body from rejecting). You're gonna scan people pre operation, and post operation.

3. I cant make that distinction between a nurse and a technologist. Nurses do more, but like I said, you are gonna be in contact with patients, you just dont clean them up.

4 & 5. It is not as bad as a nurse, as you dont say with a patient for a whole shift, but yeah, you will see blood and bowels (which happen sometimes while you are scanning). As for dealing with death and families.. you have to keep professional. It doesnt happen everyday, but when you work in a hospital, you expect it to happen. It is hard no matter what. I was called to an ICU to scan a boy that went into cardiac arrest, amidst the chaos, I had to scan. While the mom and dad were crying looking at me. There are good sides too, so it is not all bad.

I had a classmate that didnt want to deal with vomiting and blood... you have to expect these things in the medical field when you are dealing with patients. In vascular, you see many patients with diabetes and rotting limbs, or open wounds on the legs because their body cant heal.

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APPB in Tucson, Arizona

16 months ago

Roger in Oakland, California said: 1. You might find work in a clinic setting, like a doctor's office. But if you want to be a great scanner, see pathology, even build a good network, I feel a hospital offers more.

2. Transplants are part of the game. Just because someone is repaired, they still need to be check on. For instance, heart transplants with echo, we look at how the heart is functioning, but also look at the heart muscle as it gets thicker (steroids).
For general or vascular ultrasound. What if a person had a kidney transplant? You have to know what you are looking at and where might have made the connections in the arteries. But also if any kidney disease increases (all transplant patients have to take a ton of meds, and they are not meds to make you healthy, they are meds to keep you body from rejecting). You're gonna scan people pre operation, and post operation.

3. I cant make that distinction between a nurse and a technologist. Nurses do more, but like I said, you are gonna be in contact with patients, you just dont clean them up.

4 & 5. It is not as bad as a nurse, as you dont say with a patient for a whole shift, but yeah, you will see blood and bowels (which happen sometimes while you are scanning). As for dealing with death and families.. you have to keep professional. It doesnt happen everyday, but when you work in a hospital, you expect it to happen. It is hard no matter what. I was called to an ICU to scan a boy that went into cardiac arrest, amidst the chaos, I had to scan. While the mom and dad were crying looking at me. There are good sides too, so it is not all bad.

Hi Roger,
More questions but out of room. will do a new post below

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APPB in Tucson, Arizona

16 months ago

Roger in Oakland, California said: 1. You might find work in a clinic setting, like a doctor's office. But if you want to be a great scanner, see pathology, even build a good network, I feel a hospital offers more.

Roger, thank you for messaging back and forth. Sorry I have so many questions. Based on what you have told me....

1)If you are literally dealing with all of those things, ambutations, open wounds, cardiac arrest during the sonogram ect. This would be really tough for me. Do you have to deal with all of these things in a doctor's office, mobile, or a straight imaging center?
2) are the options to work in a clinic or doctor's office much less straight out of school? Do you think I would ABSOLUTELY have to be in the hospital?

I really want to do this but some of the things you are saying I will have to deal with, I honestly don't think I could handle physically or emotionally. I assume in a straight imaging center or somewhere you won't have to deal with as much blood, death, ect? Also, do you have any other recommendations for jobs I should look into that are similar but maybe easier on the squeamish?

If you want to email me it's curiousultrasoundgirl@yahoo.com. Thank you again for your time.

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Heidi in Hayward, California

16 months ago

APPB in Tucson, Arizona said:

APPB,

It's may be that ultrasound isn't a good choice for you. The first thing I was told when I entered the program was that we are not merely picture takers. As we acquire these images, we're constantly thinking about what we may be seeing, what we're seeing suggests, where else should we look, etc. Much of the time, the radiologists rely on us to tell them our findings. Working in medicine means you work with sick people and even at an outpatient facility, many of these people are ill or have potential to become ill during the exam.

It's very possible that a patient will feel nauseous in the middle of the exam and need to vomit, or it may be as simple as having to perform a pelvic ultrasound which usually requires an endovaginal exam, sometimes on someone who is either menstruating or bleeding due to an unknown cause. There is no way around "blood and guts" if you want to work in this field. Even if you choose to scan pregnant females all day long, you will have to deal with women who are bleeding due to miscarriage, fetal demise in utero, etc. The job is physically and mentally demanding and draining but the rewards are tremendous. However, there's no reason to drive yourself crazy going through an intense program only to quit halfway through, or worse, to finish it and end up hating the field.

By the way, I agree with Roger, if your goal is to become a great sonographer, you need to have that hospital experience, because only there will you experience it all.

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Roger in Oakland, California

15 months ago

APPB in Tucson, Arizona said:

Heidi hit it on the head.

You investigate what is going on, so the patient can get proper treatment.

As for Doctor's office setting... you might not deal with as critically ill patients, but you will be scanning your arm off (speaking from an echo perspective). That is if you they will hire you. Most of the time, they hire people that are experienced (which means they are fast, know what to look for and dont need training). And they do this because they can put 10-12 patients back to back all day long and that equals money for their practice.

Even in an ultrasound program, you will have an internship in a hospital. Because the program has to expose you to that environment.

The idea of ultrasound being just picture takers is so far from the truth. You are finding out why someone is ill. You have to interact with the patients, nurses, MDs, families...

If you are squeamish about blood, vomit.. that's an everyday deal. As for deaths, that happens. You are in DIRECT contact with a patient that is sick, I've seen my friend get projectile vomiting shot on her while she was getting ready.

If you are absolutely trying to avoid the hospital setting, I would recommend you rethink any medical profession that deals with patients. (EKG, Ultrasound, X ray, Nursing). Because you will have to go through it.

You mentioned money, well, this is why you get paid good.

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Roger in Oakland, California

15 months ago

Heidi in Hayward, California said: APPB,

It's may be that ultrasound isn't a good choice for you. The first thing I was told when I entered the program was that we are not merely picture takers. As we acquire these images, we're constantly thinking about what we may be seeing, what we're seeing suggests, where else should we look, etc. Much of the time, the radiologists rely on us to tell them our findings. Working in medicine means you work with sick people and even at an outpatient facility, many of these people are ill or have potential to become ill during the exam.

It's very possible that a patient will feel nauseous in the middle of the exam and need to vomit, or it may be as simple as having to perform a pelvic ultrasound which usually requires an endovaginal exam, sometimes on someone who is either menstruating or bleeding due to an unknown cause. There is no way around "blood and guts" if you want to work in this field. Even if you choose to scan pregnant females all day long, you will have to deal with women who are bleeding due to miscarriage, fetal demise in utero, etc. The job is physically and mentally demanding and draining but the rewards are tremendous. However, there's no reason to drive yourself crazy going through an intense program only to quit halfway through, or worse, to finish it and end up hating the field.

By the way, I agree with Roger, if your goal is to become a great sonographer, you need to have that hospital experience, because only there will you experience it all.

Great Response Heidi! and you are in the East bay. I'm at Children's up the 808.

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Roger in Oakland, California

15 months ago

Roger in Oakland, California said: Great Response Heidi! and you are in the East bay. I'm at Children's up the 808.

I mean 880

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Julie in El Cerrito, California

15 months ago

Roger in Oakland, California said: I mean 880

Hi Roger and Heidi,

I'm also in the East Bay and was wondering where you both got your degrees. I've been looking at Kaiser Permanente School of Allied Health Sciences for either their radiogrophy program or sonography program. Any thoughts or experience with this school? And may I ask where you completed all your pre-requisite courses? Berekeley City College is always so full and very difficult to register for required courses. And lastly, if you know of any pros and cons to help me decide between becoming a radiogropher or sonographer, I'd really appreciate it!

Thank you so much!

Julie

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