Pregnancy and Beyond: An overview of Ultrasound Scans

Posted On April 20, 2019.

One of the most exciting aspects of pregnancy is visiting the ultrasound scan centre. A scan during pregnancy can make the expectant mother a little nervous and this is perfectly natural. Scans help you to know if your little one is developing normally or not and an added bonus that you may get is: your baby may give you a tiny little kick during the scan to let you know that it is. With our patients, we have experienced this and a lot more at our clinic.


Who will be involved during the procedure?

The technical name given to the highest qualified doctor is a “Fetal Medicine Specialist”. To be a Fetal Medicine Specialist, it is mandatory that the doctor has to be an obstetrician as well. After an M.S in Gynecology, it takes years of training and experience across thousands of cases to achieve this qualification that allows the doctor to perform a number of procedures ranging from regular scans to intricate procedures such as Fetal Reduction and Chorionic Villus Sampling.


A professional who is qualified but to a lesser degree is called a Sonographer. Sonographers are doctors who are not necessarily trained in the field of obstetric ultrasound. While they are equipped to handle routine cases, anything beyond the obvious will have to be referred to a Fetal Medicine Specialist.


What happens during an ultrasound?

The thought of an ultrasound scan evokes images of black and white pictures on a monitor, a stiff doctor keeping mum during the whole procedure, hours of waiting to understand if everything is fine. Well, other than the images being in black and white, the other notions are not true. At Chennai Women’s Clinic, we believe in low waiting times and constant communication with the patient, before and during the procedure to put her at ease.


During an ultrasound, you will be told to lie down on an examination table. These scans use sound waves to create a picture of your baby on the monitor. These scans are painless and there are no risks to you or your baby.


Some gel will be applied on your belly and the doctor would move a transducer across it in order to obtain images of your baby on a screen that she will be able to examine.


Sometimes, you may be asked to have a full bladder for some of your scans as this helps to create a clearer picture of the baby. There is nothing to fear or stress about as you have your doctor to support you. According to the position of the baby in the womb, the doctor may re-position you on the examination table so that she can both get a good view of your baby on the screen.


There are various scans meant for different stages of pregnancy but and the length of scans ranges from a few minutes to around 20 minutes. Once the necessary images are captured, the doctor wipes off the gel and you can empty your bladder if it has been filled. Many parents have personally told us that they feel more attached to their baby after the scan. It’s a good idea to share the experience with your partner/wife or relatives.


Sometimes the doctor may need to perform a vaginal ultrasound. The probe that is used for this will not be doing deep down and most women do not feel it as it fits comfortably inside the vagina. This might be recommended if the following arise:


  • you are less than 8 weeks pregnant
  • you are overweight
  • the baby is deep inside your abdomen


Why ultrasound Scan must be done?

Ultrasound scans may be recommended at various stages of pregnancy for several reasons including gauging the mental and physical development of the baby, growth profile and blood flow parameters. Fetal Medicine Specialists use procedures to evaluate other fetal anomalies including those impacting the heart or evolving genetic conditions. They also assist in performing certain types of biopsy as well. There are at least five different types of ultrasounds that your doctor may ask you to get throughout your pregnancy which we will be covering in our next blog.


Is it a must to have an ultrasound scan during pregnancy?

It is your choice whether to have an ultrasound scan or not during pregnancy. Many women find it reassuring to know if they are having a healthy pregnancy or not to help prepare for birth. If there are any abnormalities to be seen, it may be possible to arrange for immediately Fetal speciality care to help manage the pregnancy or prepare for birth.


If you are unsure as to whether or not to have a scan, you can discuss with us to help make the right decision for you. At Chennai Women's Clinic, we specialize in performing all the tests and screenings that are necessary for monitoring the condition of a developing fetus. We provide expert diagnosis and management of complex cases.


Please contact us at 733 8771 733 for more information.

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