LLU Has Two Sonography Programs:
A Bachelor's in Diagnostic Medical Sonography
A Certificate in Cardiac Sonography
The application window for the 2018-2020 cohort is now closed.
The application window for the 2019-2021 cohort will open in June of 2018.
About the Sonography Profession
Ultrasound, commonly called Sonography or Medical Sonography, is a diagnostic medical procedure that uses high frequency sound waves (ultrasound) to produce dynamic visual images of organs, tissues, or blood flow inside the body. This type of procedure is often referred to as a sonogram or ultrasound scan.
Sonography can be used to examine many parts of the body, such as the abdomen, breasts, obstetrics & gynecology, prostate, heart, and blood vessels.
More and more, sonography is being used in the detection and treatment of heart disease and vascular disease that can lead to a stroke. It is also used to guide fine-needle tissue biopsies. Unlike X-rays, sonography is a radiation-free imaging modality.
The profession requires judgment, critical thinking, and the ability to provide appropriate health-care services. Sonographers are highly skilled professionals qualified by technological education to provide patient services using diagnostic ultrasound under the supervision of a doctor of medicine or osteopathy.
A sonographer may provide this service in a variety of medical settings where the physician is responsible for the use and interpretation of ultrasound procedures. Sonographers assist physicians in gathering sonographic data necessary to reach diagnostic decisions. The diagnostic medical sonographer is able to:
- Obtain, review, and integrate pertinent patient history and supporting clinical data to facilitate optimum diagnostic results.
- Perform appropriate procedures and record anatomical, pathological, and/or physiological data for interpretation by a physician.
- Record and process sonographic data and other pertinent observations made during the procedure for presentation to the interpreting physician.
- Exercise critical thinking and judgment in the performance of sonographic services.
- Provide patient education related to medical ultrasound and promote principles of good health.
Choosing a Program
Two programs are available from Loma Linda University: Certificate in Cardiac Sonography and Bachelor of Science in Diagnostic Medical Sonography.
The cardiac track focuses on the heart.
The Bachelor’s degree focuses on the abdominal organs, OB-GYN, small parts (breast, thyroid, etc.) and the vascular system.
Choose the one that fits your interest.
The Bachelor of Science in Diagnostic Medical Sonography is a 27-month program. Sonography is a diagnostic medical procedure that uses high frequency sound waves (ultrasound) to produce dynamic visual images of organs, tissues, or blood flow inside the body. This type of procedure is often referred to as a sonogram or ultrasound scan. Diagnostic Medical Sonography is used to examine many parts of the body, such as the abdomen, breasts, obstetrics & gynecology, prostate, and blood vessels. The program begins each Summer quarter in June, with 12-14 students. This program does not require a previous degree but has prerequisites and requirements.
Cardiac sonographers, or echocardiographers, use non-invasive cardiovascular technology equipment to assist in the diagnosis and treatment of patients with heart and blood vessel conditions. The ideal candidate for this career has excellent communication skills in order to convey scientific information to doctors, as well as a good bedside manner for dealing with patients.
Cardiac sonographers perform echocardiograms, or ultrasound imaging, to evaluate different aspects of the heart, such as chamber size, valve function and blood flow. They review patient files and must be familiar with basic cardiac conditions in order to recognize and identify any abnormalities.
While cardiac sonographers do not themselves diagnose patients, they work with physicians in doing so or may assist in other diagnostic procedures. Other duties may include scheduling appointments, explaining procedures to patients and maintaining ultrasound equipment.
The Certificate in Cardiac Sonography is a 12-month program. Coursework and clinical time in this program involves in-depth concentrated study of assessment of the heart. It includes extensive study of the heart hemodynamics, normal anatomy, disease processes, and patient treatment. The Cardiac Sonography program begins each Fall. This program prepares students to sit for the ARDMS board exam. All students are required to take and pass the ARDMS Standard Physics and Instrumentation (SPI) exam before completion of the program. This program does require a previous associate's or bachelor's degree in any field.
Gainful Employment Disclosures
The following links will provide information regarding the cost of the certificate, financing available, median debt, normal timeframe for completion, and job placement rates for students that have completed this program. To view this information, Click the links below.
School of Allied Health Professions
Department of Radiation Technology
Medical Sonography Program
Loma Linda University
Nichol Hall, Room A829
Loma Linda, CA 92350