Arterial Ultrasound Scan

Sonoworld offers arterial ultrasound scans to evaluate the health of your arteries..

Arterial Ultrasound Scan

The purpose of an arterial ultrasound scan is to create detailed images of the blood vessels, specifically the arteries, using high-frequency sound waves. These images are used to identify problems such as blockages, plaque build-up, blood clots, aneurysms, and other issues that may affect blood flow. The procedure is also known as an arterial duplex ultrasound, or simply an arterial ultrasound.

It is often used to evaluate the blood flow in the legs, arms, neck, and other parts of the body and it is also commonly used to monitor treatment of the vascular issues such as blood clots, narrowing or blocked vessels.

A sonographer is holding an ultrasound probe looking at the ultrasound scanner


What is the cost of the arterial scan?

The cost of the arterial scan is £175 per limb (Bilateral - £260)

What preparation is required?

No preparation is required.

 How is the arterial scan performed?

An arterial ultrasound is non-invasive, painless and safe procedure, with minimal risk and performed by a specialist sonographer or a vascular scientist.

You will lie on a table, and a gel will be applied to the skin over the area of interest, typically the limb, to help the sound waves pass through the skin more easily. A handheld transducer, which emits high-frequency sound waves and detects the echoes, will be moved over the area being examined.

The echoes are then converted into images that are displayed on a monitor. The images can be viewed in real-time, which allows to see the blood flow through the vessels. It generally takes around 10 minutes to perform the scan.

During the procedure, you might be asked to hold different positions or to perform certain movements, such as raising or lowering the limb being examined, to help to obtain a better view of the blood vessels.


Why you should have an arterial ultrasound?

An arterial ultrasound scan may be recommended for individuals who have symptoms or risk factors associated with poor blood flow or vascular disease.

Some common reasons for an arterial ultrasound include:

  • Symptoms of peripheral arterial disease (PAD) in the legs, such as pain, cramping, or numbness while walking (claudication) or at rest.
  • Suspected or known blockages or narrowed blood vessels in the legs, arms, or other parts of the body.
  • Aneurysms (bulging or weakened areas in the wall of an artery).
  • Blood clots in the legs or other parts of the body.
  • Evaluating blood flow before and after a surgical procedure or angioplasty, which is a procedure that uses a balloon to widen narrowed or blocked blood vessels.
  • Monitoring treatment of blood clots, narrowing or blocked vessels.
  • Symptoms of carotid artery disease, such as stroke or transient ischaemic attacks (TIAs), which can be caused by blockages in the carotid arteries in the neck.
  • An elevated risk of cardiovascular disease based on factors such as age, diabetes, smoking, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol.

How long the procedure takes?

An arterial ultrasound procedure typically takes around 10 minutes to complete, depending on how many limbs are examined. 

Will it be painful?

There is usually no pain or discomfort associated with the procedure. However, some patients may experience slight discomfort from the cold gel applied to the skin, or from having to hold a certain position for a period of time. Some patients may also experience mild discomfort from the pressure of the transducer on their skin. But these are usually minimal, and the procedure is generally well tolerated by most patients.

After the procedure, the patient can go back to their normal activities. There are generally no restrictions on activity or diet following the procedure, although the patient may be advised to avoid strenuous exercise for a short period of time if the blood vessels in the legs were examined.

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A female patient is having a hernia ultrasound scan in London

About Ultrasound

Ultrasound imaging is a medical diagnostic technique where sound waves are being used to image various parts of the body.
Other terms for ultrasound imaging are sonograms, US and sonography.
Ultrasound is widely used these days as it is painless and safe for adults, children and foetuses. There are no side effects such as the ones associated with radiation.
During the ultrasound scan, the sonographer rests a small probe over the skin. This probe produces sound waves, i.e. pulsations, that travel through the tissues. Some sound waves are being reflected back to the transducer, and the computer analyses the returning echoes and produces the image on the screen. It is the same principle as the sonar the navy uses.
Ultrasound is being used to image mostly solid organs such as liver, kidneys, uterus and ovaries, muscles and blood vessels and babies in the womb.
It has, however, limited value in organs such as lungs, bone, stomach and bowel/colon.
Ultrasound images are black and white but colour Doppler is being used to evaluate organ and blood vessel blood flow and this is what the red and blue colours on the screen are.

What is a Doppler ultrasound scan?

A Doppler ultrasound scan is a specialized ultrasound technique that uses high-frequency sound waves to create images of blood flow through the body's vessels. It is also known as a Doppler ultrasound, Doppler study, or simply Doppler. The term “Doppler” refers to the use of the Doppler effect, which is a phenomenon in which the frequency of a wave changes as the source and observer move relative to each other. In medical ultrasound, the Doppler effect is used to measure the speed and direction of blood flow.

During a Doppler ultrasound scan, a handheld transducer is placed on the skin over the area of interest, typically a limb or an artery in the neck. The transducer emits high-frequency sound waves that travel through the skin and into the body, where they bounce off moving blood cells. The echoes are then picked up by the transducer and converted into images that are displayed on a monitor. These images show the direction and speed of blood flow through the vessels.

Doppler ultrasound scans can be used to evaluate blood flow in the legs, arms, and neck, as well as in other parts of the body. It can help to identify blockages, narrowed blood vessels, aneurysms, blood clots and other issues that may affect blood flow. It is also commonly used to evaluate blood flow before and after angioplasty, monitor blood clots and assess the blood flow in the foetal heart during pregnancy.

Doppler ultrasound is a non-invasive, painless and safe procedure, similar to regular ultrasound, and it usually takes around 30-60 minutes to complete.


Where can I get an ultrasound scan without a doctor's referral.

In our ultrasound scan clinic in Harley Street, you can book a private abdominal scan without the need for a doctor's referral.

Ultrasound London Clinic Address:
29 Weymouth Street, Marylebone, London, W1G 7DB
Phone: 020 3633 4902 Email: or
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