When should I get my first ultrasound during pregnancy?

What You Need to Know About Your First Ultrasound

Having your first ultrasound is a milestone in your pregnancy. Technology utilizing a scanner, high-frequency sound waves and a monitor, lets you see your unborn child for the first time via a sonogram or image. Your first ultrasound can be conducted throughout any trimester.

Here’s a look at when a first ultrasound may be done.

Scans That Detect Abnormalities

Your doctor may recommend this ultrasound if you’ve been bleeding or have previously suffered a miscarriage. This is usually conducted trans-vaginally at 6-10 weeks post conception. It’s also often used to confirm uterine pregnancy, and rule out an ectopic pregnancy. Complications also could arise with the absence of a placenta, or a foetal heartbeat, in embryos with crowns that are longer than 5mm.

10-13 Week Ultrasound

This would ensue if no abnormalities have been suspected. Also referred to as a dating scan, it’s conducted to ascertain your due date. It’s more accurate in determining your baby’s birth date than just your last menstruation. Here, gestational age will be confirmed by looking at the date of your last menstruation, the dating ultrasound, plus your hormone measures. You can also decipher foetus and crown ramp size here.

This ultrasound is conducted via your lower abdomen, using a transducer. Your baby’s heartbeat, and number of embryos you’re carrying also can be confirmed.

The Nuchal Translucency Scan

This type of ultrasound can be merged with the dating scan and blood testing to detect complications such as Down’s syndrome, congenital heart disease and chromosomal irregularities. It’s non-invasive and determines the amount of clear space in tissue at the nape of your baby’s neck. This translucent space usually appears larger with abnormalities.

Your doctor may also try to locate foetal nasal bone to rule out complications here. This scan is used to ascertain risk only, and you may opt for additional tests such as amniocentesis or chorionic villus sampling to confirm if there is indeed an abnormality.

First Ultrasounds at 18-22 Weeks

This used to be the only ultrasound testing offered in previous years. It assists in determining placental pathology. You should also be able to see your baby’s gender at around 20 weeks with this ultrasound. Book your appointment with us today for your first scan. Our practice is accredited by the American Institute of Ultrasound Medicine (AIUM), as well as the American College of Radiology (ACR).

 

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