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    Scans & Tests

    Are you a first-time mother? Here's everything you need to know about ultrasounds during pregnancy 

    Written on 14 August 2018

    A pregnancy ultrasound is an imaging test that uses high-frequency sound waves to create pictures of a baby in the womb, as well as the mother's reproductive system. Ultrasound is also called a sonogram which is a prenatal test offered to most pregnant women.

    There are two main kinds of Ultrasound used during pregnancy—transvaginal and transabdominal.

    • Having an ultrasound during your pregnancy is important because it can quickly give your doctor a lot of information about your baby.

    • An ultrasound can be done at any stage in your pregnancy. A gel is applied to your abdomen to allow sound waves to pass from the ultrasound probe into the uterus. The ultrasound probe is moved over your abdomen, and an ultrasound image is produced by the reflection of the sound waves off the baby.

    • Ultrasound imaging uses sound waves to produce pictures of the inside of the body. It is used to help diagnose the causes of pain, swelling, and infection in the body's internal organs and examine the baby's vitals.

    • If the technician discovers any problems, you may need to come back for a second ultrasound or other tests to ensure everything is fine.

    • The first Ultrasound may take place when you are around 6 to 8 weeks pregnant, and its target is to confirm pregnancy dating to make sure we have an accurate due date. It also allows to hear the baby's heartbeat and to see if there's one, or more foetus.

    • After that, there are several reasons you may have additional ultrasounds during your pregnancy like:

    You have any spotting during pregnancy and want to ensure everything is fine.

    You are carrying multiple babies and want to monitor their growth.

    You are at risk of preterm labour and to check for changes in the cervix.

    Your practitioner wants to check whether your baby may be too large to deliver vaginally.

    The first Ultrasound is done to confirm the foetal heartbeat and the baby's position in the mother's uterus. Later, ultrasounds screen for foetal growth and placenta location, and a baby's general health and anatomy. Towards the end of pregnancy, ultrasounds can be useful for checking the length of your cervix as well as verifying that your baby is in a heads-down position before Labor.

    Ultrasounds are necessary to know what is happening inside the mother's womb and if both the baby and mother are safe.

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