Several readers have reached out to me with questions regarding my career in Ultrasound, such as how I ultimately decided to become an ultrasonographer and what it is I enjoy most about my profession. So today, I proudly reply to that question in hopes of answering everyone’s inquiries as thoroughly and honestly as possible!
Since a young age, I’ve been absorbed in all things medical. Growing up with a Father who’s a doctor, surrounded by bookshelves full of textbooks, case studies, and innumerable health related illustrations, I couldn’t help but glance at them, dismayed, yet infatuated with all the anatomy, physiology, and pathology. The human body is just plain fascinating!
I chose a career in sonography because it allows me to be creative and it pairs well with my detail oriented personality. But, I didn’t always want to be a sonographer. In high school, I’d had my heart set on becoming a nurse. I eagerly job shadowed several nurses at Boone and University hospitals in Columbia, MO, only to be set back. I didn’t get that “fated feeling” I’d anticipated all along. The joyous feeling of excitement and certitude was swiftly replaced with uncertainty and doubt.
It wasn’t until my cousin showed me a picture of he and his wife’s fetal sonogram, that I began contemplating the idea of ultrasound as a profession. At the time, I naïvely believed, like so many others, that ultrasound was only used for the sole purpose of imaging babies in utero. I honestly, legitimately, thought it was just some fun exam pregnant women could have done for the fun of it to get those oh-so-adorable and sought after profile pictures and/or “skeptical” gender reveals!
Fast forward nearly 14 years, and here I am, going on 6 years of being a lead sonographer at a privately owned, outpatient imaging center- Advanced Radiology!
I truly enjoy being a sonographer because I love helping people. I’m super social and outgoing so I really enjoy the one-on-one time I get to spend with my patients. It is fulfilling to know that the images I capture help to diagnose, treat, and cure many people with diseases or life threatening illnesses. I also, enjoy the variety of scans I perform throughout the day such as organs, muscles, blood vessels, and an occasional fetus or two!
I appreciate the variety of careers within the ultrasound profession. Whether it’s being a professor, working in a hospital, or an outpatient facility, being a traveling tech, or becoming a sales/applications specialist for a well-known medical company, there are a multitude of options in this particular field. Many sonographers even have the luxury of choosing between full-time, part-time, or PRN shifts to fit their individual and family needs.
I am repeatedly amazed at how precise and accurate modern day ultrasound technology has become and is still becoming. The image clarity and quality continually improves from year to year. I am very passionate and proud of my profession and though I may be recognized as a sonographer by trade, I also assume a number of other roles that often get overlooked. I’m not just “someone who takes pictures of babies all day” (see article- A glimpse into the hard, heartbreaking, and rewarding work of a sonographer) and I am grateful for the opportunity to work in such a rewarding and gratifying field. I enjoy being a sonographer and it is an honor to become a part of my patient’s health care journey.
*other related ultrasound posts: A glimpse into the hard, heartbreaking, and rewarding work of a sonographer and The Sympathetic Sonographer
Natalie BHS, RDMS, RVT