Transcranial Doppler Study

Also known as: transcranial Doppler ultrasound, TCD ultrasound, TCD study.

What is a transcranial Doppler study?

Ultrasound is a medical imaging technique that uses sound waves to produce images of the inside of the body. A transcranial Doppler study is an ultrasound that is used to view and examine the circulation of blood in and around the brain. The technique is useful for children or young adults with sickle cell disease to determine their risk of stroke. It measures the velocity of blood flow in the middle cerebral artery.

What happens during the test?

The transcranial Doppler study is a painless test. The patient lies on his or her back, and the technician applies gel around the face. A tool called a transducer is pressed against the skin of the face and head in various places in order to produce images of the brain and blood flowing through the brain. These are used for diagnosis.

Is any special preparation needed?

No special preparation is needed for this test. The patient must remain quiet and still; and have no symptoms of acute pain or infections at the time of the test.

What are the risk factors?

There are no risk factors related to the transcranial Doppler study.

Reviewed by: Athena C Pefkarou, MD

This page was last updated on: November 06, 2020 02:57 PM

Sickle Cell / Hemoglobinopathies Care Program

For over 30 years we've strived to offer a comprehensive, patient family focused health care delivery system that integrates local community resources.

Learn More