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Thread: How often should you have ultrasound?

  1. #1

    Default How often should you have ultrasound?

    Hi everyone,

    My wife went to see her doctor in week 4 because she wasn't sure she is pregnant or not. So, the doctor did an ultrasound to confirm that she is pregnant. The doctor did the 2nd ultrasound in 10 weeks 2 days to make sure the baby is growing normally.

    Many people say you shouldn't do an ultrasound before 12 weeks. This made me worried about the ultrasound in week 4 will harm my baby or not.

    When did you have your 1st ultraound? How often do you do ultrasound?

    Thanks,

    jcboy

  2. #2
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    I had my first ultrasound at 20 weeks. I know a lot of women have several ultrasounds before then, and while I'm aware there is no documented scientific evidence that ultrasounds are harmful, I prefer to not expose my child to unnecessary sound waves. I know I am of the minority in my thinking but that's my two cents. No dr can perform any medical test without your consent though, you should never feel forced into doing something you're not comfortable with. Congratulations on your wife's pregnancy and good luck!!

  3. #3
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    Generally, an OB will do an ultrasound during weeks 8 - 10 to help determine the due date (measurements at that point are more indicative of gestation). Some women have ultrasounds before that for various medical reasons. Most women have an ultrasound around week 20 because that is when all the organs/parts are formed, the baby is big enough to see them all and the bones have not yet calcified.

    Ultrasounds are extremely routine at all gestational ages with no known issues.
    Jessica (32) and Ryan (32). Madelyn born August 5, 2009; Malachi born December 23, 2010 and Nathaniel born July 19, 2013. Lost a loved baby 02/29/12, 05/14/12 and 07/05/12 all due a serious allergic reaction to fabric softener.
    My Ovulation Chart

  4. #4

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    U/s done prior to 12 weeks are for dating purposes because u/s after 12 weeks aren't reliable for dating. The only time dating would be useful is if the mother is unsure of conception date or has irregular cycles. Most health care providers offer an anatomy scan/biophysical profile around 20 weeks. This checks placental flow, growth, organ function and development, heart rate, and fluid levels among other things. Some doctors will want later ultrasounds if problems are suspected. For example a sudden weight gain could indicate too much amniotic fluid which can be related to kidney problems. A drop in weight gain or no weight gain could indicate too little fluid also a sign of kidney problems, amniotic leaks, etc. You should certainly consider the risks and benefits before consenting to u/s. The safety of u/s during pregnancy is debatable, and most experts recommend limiting u/s use. Alternatively, u/s can detect some abnormalities that can be addressed in utero and certain conditions may require closer monitoring to prevent more problems. If the pregnancy is healthy though and no issues are suspected then there should be no reason to have more than a single u/s for the 20 week anatomy scan. If your wife didn't know her date of conception that would be a reason for the u/s prior to 12 weeks. There are people who refuse all u/s because they are concerned with the safety. You have the right to refuse any and all u/s at any time.
    Mary Jane, doula and mom of Vada, Brynna, Tea, Moira, Kyan, Ambria, Aslan, and Anakin.
    “Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind.” ~ Dr. Seuss

  5. #5

    Default

    Thank you for the information. I hope everything will be just fine since my wife already done her ultrasound. The one that bothers me the most is the ultrasound in week 4 but I guess should be fine...

  6. #6
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    I'm sure no harm was done to your baby from the week 4 ultrasound. You'll know for next time to refuse it. It's hard to go against what a dr tells you needs to be done. Most OBs obviously use medical intervention very frequently. I'm not comfortable with that which is why I see a midwife. But there are OBs out there who will work with couples who prefer limited intervention. Good luck to you and your wife!

  7. #7
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    I had multiple ultrasounds but, I was high risk at the end of my pregnancies. My son did not have enough amniotic fluid. I had gestational diabetes with my daughter they did many growth ultrasounds with her. For me the benefits outweighed the risks. My daughter wasn't kicking as much as she should have that was a concern which technically they could have used a doppler to check her heart beat. The ultrasound showed her kicking a lot but, I didn't feel it. She had the tiniest feet when she was born so that's why. Since 4 weeks is so early and the doctor wants to do another ultrasound 10 weeks you may refuse it but, I would ask if you can hear the baby's heart beat on the doppler. That in my opinion is a great moment. Maryjane also made a lot of excellent points too.



  8. #8
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    Since your wife is very early in her pregnancy and I encourage you both to interview a few doctors unless she likes the one she has. If she is unsure about the doctor she has now would be the time to look into other doctors that flow with your beliefs. The later into the pregnancy the harder it is to find a doctor.



  9. #9

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    Yes, my wife has an irregular cycles. She wasn't sure her pregnancy, so she went to see a doctor in week 4 and the doctor did an ultrasound to confirm. Anyway, 2 ultrasounds prior week 12 has really bothered me and I am quite worry about it.

  10. #10

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    I had early ultrasounds because I had an ectopic pregnancy once before, so they wanted to make sure it was in the uterus. That was around 5+ weeks. Then I had another a couple of weeks later, because we couldn't see the heartbeat yet at the early one. Then I had another around 20 weeks and another around 36 weeks. It's very common for the doctor to do an early one when the date of conception is unknown or questionable.
    Vicki 39 DH45 SD12 SS9
    DS Hudson Sept 23, 2009!
    DS Trevor July 29, 2012!
    "Fat babies have no pride" - Lyle Lovett

  11. #11

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    Hi hopeful,

    Thank you for your input. I guess I feel better now.

  12. #12

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    I had some bleeding recently so had a transvaginal u/s (I was four weeks and nothing was seen but the pregnancy hormone in my blood was high and rising correctly). I'm having another u/s on the 5h of April (I'm 5 weeks today so I'll be six weeks and two days) and as far as I know no harm is done to the baby
    Me (25) DH (28) Pregnant With Baby #1 Lost An Angel 5/2/13


  13. #13

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    I am not sure what is the difference between transvaginal ultrasound and the regular ultrasound. Is transvaginal ultraound more for the first few weeks? My wife did a regular ultraound in week 4.

  14. #14
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    I don't think there is a difference in risk between a transvaginal (where the device is placed in the vagina) or the standard ultrasound (done over the belly). Ultrasounds use high frequency sound waves to develop an image of your baby. There is debate on whether this would or would not harm a baby - some folks just prefer not to use them because they don't like the medical intervention or don't want to subject the baby (and themselves) to the sound waves. I have not seen documented proof of actual harm to a fetus due to an ultrasound, but they should be limited to medical need. In the case of the 4-week ultrasound, your wife's doctor felt there was a medical need to determine (and likely date) the pregnancy.
    I am scheduled to have an 8-week, 10-week, 12-week and 20-week ultrasound, and there will likely be checks at my regular appointments, as well. I am high risk due to past losses (that have nothing to do with ultrasounds) and my age, so this is not unexpected or unwarranted for my situation.
    This is a good summary of ultrasounds and may help to put your mind at ease: http://americanpregnancy.org/prenata...ltrasound.html

    Good luck and I hope that you are able to get the answers you need!
    Lily

  15. #15

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    Fwiw, dopplers that listen to the heartrate also use sound waves. That is why many midwives use fetoscopes instead.
    Mary Jane, doula and mom of Vada, Brynna, Tea, Moira, Kyan, Ambria, Aslan, and Anakin.
    “Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind.” ~ Dr. Seuss

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