Diagnostic Medical Sonographers
SOC: 29-2032.00


Produce ultrasonic recordings of internal organs for use by physicians.

National Salary Information:

Hourly Statistics:

Annual Statistics:

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 wage data.

Employment Projections:

Employment (2014):
60,700 employed

Projected (2024):
76,700 employed

Projected growth (2014-2024)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 2014-2024 employment projections external site. "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2014-2024). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.

Alternate Titles:

  • Cardiac Sonographer
  • Cardiac/Vascular Sonographer
  • Cardiovascular Sonographer
  • Diagnostic Medical Sonographer
  • Echo Tech (Echocardiographic Technician)
  • Medical Sonographer
  • Polysomnographic Technician
  • Polysomnographic Technologist
  • Registered Diagnostic Cardiac Sonographer
  • Registered Diagnostic Medical Sonographer (RDMS)
  • Sonogram Technician
  • Sonographer
  • Sonography Technician
  • Staff Sonographer
  • Ultra Sound Technician
  • Ultrasonic Tester
  • Ultrasonographer
  • Ultrasound Technician (Ultrasound Tech)
  • Ultrasound Technologist (Ultrasound Tech)
  • Ultrasound Tester
  • Vascular Sonographer

  • Job Zone Three: Medium Preparation Needed


    Previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for these occupations. For example, an electrician must have completed three or four years of apprenticeship or several years of vocational training, and often must have passed a licensing exam, in order to perform the job.


    Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.

    Job Training:

    Employees in these occupations usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.

    Required Skills:

  • Reading Comprehension
  • Active Listening
  • Writing
  • Speaking
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Critical Thinking
  • Active Learning
  • Learning Strategies
  • Monitoring
  • Social Perceptiveness
  • Coordination
  • Persuasion
  • Negotiation
  • Instructing
  • Service Orientation
  • Complex Problem Solving
  • Operations Analysis
  • Technology Design
  • Equipment Selection
  • Operation Monitoring
  • Operation and Control
  • Equipment Maintenance
  • Troubleshooting
  • Repairing
  • Quality Control Analysis
  • Judgment and Decision Making
  • Systems Analysis
  • Systems Evaluation
  • Time Management
  • Management of Financial Resources
  • Management of Material Resources
  • Management of Personnel Resources

  • Knowledge Used:

  • Administration and Management
  • Clerical
  • Economics and Accounting
  • Customer and Personal Service
  • Personnel and Human Resources
  • Production and Processing
  • Computers and Electronics
  • Engineering and Technology
  • Design
  • Mechanical
  • Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Biology
  • Psychology
  • Sociology and Anthropology
  • Geography
  • Medicine and Dentistry
  • Therapy and Counseling
  • Education and Training
  • English Language
  • Foreign Language
  • History and Archeology
  • Philosophy and Theology
  • Public Safety and Security
  • Law and Government
  • Telecommunications
  • Communications and Media
  • Transportation

  • Tasks:

  • Decide which images to include, looking for differences between healthy and pathological areas.
  • Observe screen during scan to ensure that image produced is satisfactory for diagnostic purposes, making adjustments to equipment as required.
  • Observe and care for patients throughout examinations to ensure their safety and comfort.
  • Provide sonogram and oral or written summary of technical findings to physician for use in medical diagnosis.
  • Operate ultrasound equipment to produce and record images of the motion, shape, and composition of blood, organs, tissues, or bodily masses, such as fluid accumulations.
  • Select appropriate equipment settings and adjust patient positions to obtain the best sites and angles.
  • Determine whether scope of exam should be extended, based on findings.
  • Process and code film from procedures and complete appropriate documentation.
  • Obtain and record accurate patient history, including prior test results or information from physical examinations.
  • Prepare patient for exam by explaining procedure, transferring patient to ultrasound table, scrubbing skin and applying gel, and positioning patient properly.
  • Record and store suitable images, using camera unit connected to the ultrasound equipment.
  • Coordinate work with physicians or other healthcare team members, including providing assistance during invasive procedures.
  • Maintain records that include patient information, sonographs and interpretations, files of correspondence, publications and regulations, or quality assurance records, such as pathology, biopsy, or post-operative reports.
  • Perform legal and ethical duties, including preparing safety or accident reports, obtaining written consent from patient to perform invasive procedures, or reporting symptoms of abuse or neglect.
  • Supervise or train students or other medical sonographers.
  • Maintain stock and supplies, preparing supplies for special examinations and ordering supplies when necessary.
  • Clean, check, and maintain sonographic equipment, submitting maintenance requests or performing minor repairs as necessary.
  • Perform clerical duties, such as scheduling exams or special procedures, keeping records, or archiving computerized images.
  • Perform medical procedures, such as administering oxygen, inserting and removing airways, taking vital signs, or giving emergency treatment, such as first aid or cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
  • Load and unload film cassettes used to record images from procedures.

  • Tools & Technology:

  • 3D sonography equipment
  • A-Mode ultrasound machines
  • Cardiac ultrasound equipment
  • Color Doppler ultrasound equipment
  • Continuous-wave ultrasound equipment
  • Desktop computers
  • Evacuated blood collection tubes
  • High frequency transducers
  • Immobilization and positioning devices
  • Intravenous IV supplies
  • Lancets
  • Lead barriers
  • M-mode ultrasound machines
  • Medical ultrasound printers
  • Notebook computers
  • Personal computers
  • Personal protective clothing
  • Picture archiving and communication systems PACS
  • Plethysmographs
  • Pulsed-wave Doppler ultrasound units
  • Safety glasses
  • Safety gloves
  • Sandbags
  • Sphygmomanometers
  • Tablet computers
  • Tourniquets
  • Transducers
  • Two-dimensional doppler ultrasound equipment
  • Ultrasound monitors
  • Ultrasound video equipment
  • Venipuncture needles
  • X ray beam restriction devices
  • Calendar and scheduling software
  • Database software
  • Email software
  • Medical procedure coding software
  • MEDITECH software
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Patient medical record software
  • Spreadsheet software
  • Word processing software

  • healthcare practitioners and technical

    industry stats

    SOC: 29-0000

    Total Employed: 8,021,800

    Average Annual Salary: $77,800