What ultrasounds are done in the antenatal period?
What is an ultrasound?
An ultrasound examination uses sound waves of high frequency, inaudible to the human ear that is sent via the abdomen to see at the interior of the abdomen using a system called a transducer. The echoes are captured and converted into video or digital photographs of your baby.
What is the use of ultrasound in pregnancy?
According to the Fetal Medicine Consultant, ultrasound assessment of the unborn baby is a part of the routine antenatal assessment.
An ultrasound is also called a sonogram, sonographer, echogram, or ultra-sonogram is used for:
- Confirming gestational age
- Location of pregnancy- whether inside or outside the uterus.
Number of fetuses- single or multiple
- Assess viability
- Assess the development of the unborn baby, its weight, and any structural development
- assessment of placenta and amniotic fluid
When prenatal ultrasounds is performed?
The first scan is the
Viability scan– to assess the location of pregnancy and whether it is viable or not.
The second scan is
First-trimester screening procedure– done between 11-13+6 weeks. It is done to assess the dates, structural malformations, and the markers like fluid behind the neck of the baby, nasal bone, blood flows through the heart and tummy. These markers provide a risk assessment for genetic syndromes like Trisomy 21. You may be encouraged to have a blood test, dual marker, along with it.
Morphology or anomaly scan
This scan involves step by step assessment of the fetal structure from top to bottom, placenta, umbilical cord, and fluid around the baby. It is generally done between 18 to 20 weeks.
Growth and Dopplers
These are done in the third trimester to assess the wellbeing of the unborn child. The fetal weight, fluid around the baby, and the baby’s blood flows are assessed.
It is usually done between 28-30 weeks and 35 to 37 weeks.
Is Prenatal ultrasound Safe?
Ultrasounds are absolutely safe during pregnancy.
Consult Fetal Medicine Specialist, Dr. Neha Gupta in Noida, if you have any questions or concerns about ultrasound in pregnancy.