The purpose of the Carotid Scan is to examine the size, condition and blood flow through the arteries of the neck and includes: - common carotid arteries from their origin to bifurcation (where they split in two to feed different areas of the head and brain) - internal and external carotid arteries - vertebral arteries A common reason for having this ultrasound screening test is to get a clear picture of any plaque build-up and subsequent narrowing of the carotid arteries. Narrowed carotid arteries can increase your risk of a stroke as you age.
Your Carotid Scan
This scan, available from 45 years of age, is performed by one of our qualified sonographers with diagnostic scanning experience. It includes:
- 30-minute diagnostic appointment
- full diagnostic ultrasound report
- medical follow-up recommendation where necessary
- same-day access to your images and report online
You will receive a clear written report of your scan results, including our recommendation for your next steps. If we recommend a medical follow-up, we can email a copy of your report to your healthcare provider at no extra cost.
What you get with Ultrasound Direct
Preparing for your scan
we’ll need access to your neck, so please wear clothing that allows this, ideally with a loose neckline. To have this scan, you must not have any pre-existing medical conditions, be undergoing treatment or have treatment scheduled that relates to this scan. If you are in any doubt about any type of scan, always consult your GP.
Frequently Asked Questions
On rare occasions we are unable to complete the primary purpose of a scan. For pregnancy scans, this may be due to your baby being in a difficult position, or something else such as overlying bowel gas which can obscure the ultrasound image. If this happens, we’ll book you a free of charge rescan so we can try again! The primary purpose is outlined on each scan webpage.
Absolutely! Every scan at Ultrasound Direct is performed by a fully qualified sonographer whose primary interest is your health. All our sonographers are fully trained and appropriately qualified to perform ultrasound scans. Many of our team also work in the NHS locally.
We are also registered with the Care Quality Commission, an independent regulator, to make sure you always receive the highest possible standards of care.
All our sonographers who take blood for blood tests are phlebotomy trained.
No, you can book your ultrasound directly without any sort of referral. If you have any concerns about your health, it can be useful to have scan results ready to discuss with your GP to reduce any waiting times. An ultrasound scan appointment with us can typically be booked quickly and allows enough time to ask questions too.
We will give you same day results in a clear written report with supporting images. Your scan report will advise you if any further steps are necessary. And if we recommend a medical follow-up with your healthcare provider, we can securely email them a copy of your report at no extra cost.
Your GP can refer you to Ultrasound Direct for a scan via our booking system
An ultrasound scan uses high-frequency sound waves to create an image of inside of the body. The sound waves reflect off different areas in the body and are converted into a moving picture to show what’s happening in real-time. We can record this as a video clip (available for free with our 4D Bonding and Premium 4D scans) and take still images from it.
An ultrasound scan can be external, which is when a probe is placed on the skin of the body part. Scans can also be internal, when a probe is inserted into the body. Both types of scan produce the same type of image and mini clip.