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An abdominal scan is a test (sonogram) done using a handheld device (transducer), covered with a warm gel, applied to the abdomen. Sound waves are used to produce a visual image of and to measure the blood flow in the aorta. The scan can detect the location and severity of blockages in the aorta. It can also detect the presence of an aneurysm (ballooned area) in the aorta.


  • No special preparation is needed

During the test:

  • The technician will apply the transducer and warm gel to the area to be scanned. The test is painless and takes about 30 minutes to complete

After the test:

  • You may resume your normal activities
  • If you are seeing your provider the same day, they will tell you about the test results at that time
  • If the test is done on a day that you don’t see your provider, the nurse will contact you with information about the results after the provider reviews it, usually 7-10 days.​​