Ultrasound Procedure Preps

Find the test your child is going to have below. Then, follow the directions to get your child ready for their test. Some directions change with the age of your child. Make sure you match your child’s age with the right directions. If you do not follow the directions, we will have to reschedule your child’s visit.


Stomach ultrasound (includes gallbladder, liver, pyloric stenosis and visceral doppler)
Ages birth to 2 (less than 25 pounds)

  • Four hours before the test—Do not eat or drink

Ages 3 to 7

  • Six hours before the test—Do not eat or drink

Ages 8 and older

  • Eight hours before the test—Do not eat or drink

Breast, chest, arms, legs, hands, feet, spine or thyroid ultrasound
All ages—No directions

Head or hips ultrasound

  • Two hours before the test—Do not eat or drink
    If your child is a baby, bring a bottle of milk or juice to calm him.

Pelvis or kidney ultrasound
Ages birth to 2

  • Before the test—Drink lots of water

Ages 2 to 5

  • 30 minutes before the test—Drink 8 ounces to 12 ounces (1 cup to 2 cups) of water.

Ages 5 to 12

  • One hour before the test—Drink 12 ounces to 18 ounces (2 cups to 3 cups) of water.

Ages 12 and older

  • 1.5 hours before the test—Drink 24 ounces to 36 ounces (3 cups to 4 cups) of water.

Do not urinate (pass water) after drinking this liquid.

If your child is having both a stomach and pelvis ultrasound, follow the stomach ultrasound directions, but drink the amount of water for the pelvis ultrasound.