Modern technology provides us with excellent health care alternatives. There are better and more effective ways for health practitioners to have specific information regarding a patient. One of these is Ultra Sound technology. We provide ultrasound in Lake Nona to ensure that you know the health status of your unborn baby.
What is an ultrasound?
This is a prenatal test done to most expectant women. Also known as Sonogram, it uses high-frequency soundwaves to produce live pictures from the uterus. You can, therefore, have a photo showing your baby’s position in the womb. Your doctor or your healthcare provider can then be able to check the baby’s health condition and development.
For couples and mothers, it can be an extraordinary and exciting part of pregnancy because it will be the first time you get to “see” your young one. Depending on several factors and the baby’s position, the ultrasound can capture live images enabling you to see his/her legs, hands, and other body parts. You can also be able to tell whether you will be having a boy or girl. If you want to know during childbirth, be sure to say to the provider not to reveal that information.
When is the right time to come for an Ultrasound?
Most women check-in for their ultrasound session when they are in their second trimester, usually eighteen to twenty weeks of pregnancy. However, some are known to come earlier in their first trimester before fourteen weeks of pregnancy. There is no standard timing for when to check for an ultrasound as it is dependent on certain conditions in different women. It is, therefore, recommendable to talk to your doctor or healthcare provider about when it is suitable for you.
Reasons For having an Ultrasound during pregnancy
When you come for an ultrasound, we will be able;
- To confirm the baby’s age, growth, and development. This can help calculate and figure out when you are due.
- To check if you will be having twins, triplets or multiples.
- To monitor the baby’s heartbeat, movement, and muscle tone.
- To see the baby’s position before birth ( looking for a headfirst position)
- To examine the ovaries and uterus
Also, during an ultrasound, it is possible to screen and do other tests. This could prove to be essential to see if your baby will be likely to have certain health conditions. However, it is not to mean figuring out for sure if your baby has a health condition. With an ultrasound, your doctor or healthcare provider can;
- Do screening for congenital disabilities such as heart defects and spina bifida. After the ultrasound, more tests are required by the doctor called diagnostic tests to confirm whether the baby has a congenital disability.
- Decide to do other prenatal tests such as chorionic villus sampling (CVS) or amniocentesis (Amnio)
- Check for pregnancy complications like miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy, and molar pregnancy.
Types of Ultrasound
There are different kinds of ultrasounds, and the provider decides which type to use depending on tests required and how far along the mother is in pregnancy.
For any ultrasound session, the technician will use a tool called a transducer that will create the pictures of your unborn baby on a computer monitor.
The common types of ultrasounds are;
- Transabdominal ultrasound
This is the most common ultrasound done on pregnant women. When you come for an ultrasound session, you will lay on your back on the examination table. The provider or technician will then apply a thin layer of gel on your belly. The gel is crucial because it helps the waves move swiftly and efficiently for a clear picture. After that, he/she will move the transducer across the belly, sending and collecting waves, and the computer will generate a photo or video. This takes less than a half-hour to complete.
- Transvaginal ultrasound
As the name suggests, it is an ultrasound performed through the vagina. You will be required to recline on the treatment table with feet in stirrups position. The technician will then insert a thin transducer into your vagina. It doesn’t hurt or cause any form of pain but may feel a little pressure. Transvaginal ultrasound also takes less than 30 minutes to complete.
To get more information about the baby’s condition we can do the following kinds of ultrasound;
- 3-D ultrasound
This captures many thousands of pictures in one instance, producing a photo almost precise like a photograph. It helps to check that the baby’s organs are undergoing normal growth and development. The provider can also use the 3-D image to look and check for any facial abnormalities on the unborn baby.
On the mother, it is useful to screen for issues in the uterus.
- 4-D ultrasound
It’s more or less the same as 3-D ultrasound but is more advanced since it can produce a clear video showing the limb movements of the baby in the womb.
- Doppler Ultrasound
This is a specialized ultrasound that checks the baby’s blood flow. This is particularly important if the baby isn’t undergoing normal growth and development. Usually done in the last trimester, the technician will listen to your young one’s heartbeat and, in the process, measure the rate of your little one’s blood flow mainly in blood vessels and the umbilical cord. It is also essential to have this kind of ultrasound if you suffer from Rh disease. If not treated, this disease can be perilous for your baby.
Preparation before ultrasound
There is no special preparation before going in for a session. Only wear comfortable clothing that’s easy to expose your belly during the ultrasound. For transabdominal ultrasound, it will be helpful to come within with a full bladder. This may help in producing more precise images.
Is there any risk involved with ultrasound?
Ultrasound is safe both to you and the baby. This is because it doesn’t use radiation and sound waves are safer than X-rays and cannot bring any harm to your baby. Ultrasound has been in use for more than thirty years, and there is no known case of it being harmful to the mother or child.
There is no injection or medication taken during the ultrasound, meaning you can go back to your normal activities immediately. Coming in for an ultrasound session will be vital as you will be in a position to know the current health condition of your baby. It will help in deciding if you and your baby need any special care before your due date.