More than a dozen ultrasound products have been available for two months, and one of them, the Ultrasound Gel 2, is the most widely used, according to a survey by the Australian Medical Association.
The AMA said there are a variety of factors that determine which ultrasound gel works best for people.
It said it recommends the gel for people with a high risk of having a stroke, heart attack or heart failure.
“The most important thing is that it’s not too abrasive or too hard to use,” AMA member Dr Stephen Laidlaw said.
“If you have a very large amount of bleeding, then a very soft gel might not be able to penetrate that.”
There are also other factors that could affect the outcome of a two-month scan, including blood flow and temperature.
“So if you’re in a hospital and you’ve got some swelling or you have an internal bleeding, it’s better to have a gel for two to three hours before you start,” AMA spokeswoman Anna Naughton said.
A small amount of the gel was injected in the arm, and then put into a tube with an ultrasound machine.
“You inject it, the gel gets into the blood and the machine gets to work,” Dr Laidaw said.
While there’s a high degree of risk, the AMA said it’s important for people to understand what they’re getting into.
“It’s a very powerful technology,” Dr Naughson said.”[It] does give you a better image and it’s very safe.
It’s also a lot cheaper than some of the alternatives out there.”
The gel can be used at home, at the office or on a day out, but it is only available in pharmacies.
Dr Laidaws research into the gel also found it has the highest accuracy for the two-months scan.
“When it’s applied to the surface of the arm it’s about 90 per cent accurate, which is fantastic,” Dr Wahl said.
It can also be used to detect blood flow in the lower abdomen, chest or the upper back, but only after a second scan.
Dr Wahl’s team has been testing the gel’s accuracy over the past two months and has found it works best when the gel is applied to a small area.
“For most people, that would be the arm or the shoulder,” Dr Yousuf said.
The company is currently developing a second generation gel, which will allow it to more accurately deliver a second-time scan to patients.