What type of probe do I need with my ultrasound machine?
Your probe (or transducer) is the most important part of your ultrasound system, so it’s important that you understand the differences before you choose what to buy. Our most popular choices available on the Scan Pad, in order of popularity:
- Microconvex: Small footprint, with a frequency range of 3.5-7MHz, this probe covers almost all small animal applications. It’s ideal for pregnancy scanning dogs, cats, and even small goats.
- Convex: With a larger scanning surface than the microconvex, some dog breeders prefer that they can cover a larger area in a single sweep. However, the lower frequency range (2.5-5MHz) means that images with the large convex probe will not be as high resolution as the microconvex can achieve. For larger animals, such as giant breed dogs or large breed goats or pigs, the convex transducer is the ideal choice as the lower frequencies can penetrate more deeply.
- Linear Probe: The linear probe offers a very high frequency range of 6-9MHz. It’s the best choice for scanning close to the surface, such as tendon scanning, or abdominal scanning on slim dogs, cats, and scanning for eggs or follicles in reptiles, particularly snakes. The superior image quality achievable with a linear probe is striking, but it’s not a good option for general small animal pregnancy scanning and does not provide a sector image.
- Linear Rectal Probe: Also high frequency (6-9MHz), this probe is for rectal examinations in cows and horses.
All Scan Pad transducers are at the top end of the entry level market, with 80 ceramic elements. Most equivalent systems from other manufacturers use 64 elements.