Sonosites Save Steps and Time

Dr. Anit Patel

When patients need diagnostic imaging, that usually requires a trip through the hospital, either on their bed or in a wheelchair. But moving some patients at all—especially those in the ICU—can be risky.

That’s why doctors who work at NorthBay VacaValley Hospital and NorthBay Medical Center’s Intensive Care Units were pleased with the arrival of sonosites.

These machines—which resemble a laptop computer, but with some fancy accessories—allow doctors to use ultrasound to see images right at a patient’s bedside. “The quality is actually quite good,” says Dr. Anit Patel. “It’s real-time images that allow us to skip transporting patients who might be unstable.”

The images allow doctors to perform procedures, such as live biopsies and interventional drainage of wounds, during routine rounds, according to Jerry Wilcox, director of Diagnostic Imaging.

“We knew the doctors were excited about the device when they all showed up for training,” says Wilcox. “It also takes a little bit of the burden off our ultrasound staff.”

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