Quite often, women waiting for a child are interested in how much ultrasound in pregnancy should be done, and how safe this method of research is for a baby. In our time, ultrasound is the most informative and safe method of diagnosis in medicine. Therefore, it is often used in obstetrics. Future mothers are very worried whether the US development will often be harmful to the development and health of the child. For the sake of justice it is worth noting that special studies that determine how many times during pregnancy, ultrasound can be done without harm to the health of the child, was not conducted. It should be understood that the study is conducted as necessary to monitor the development of the baby or to diagnose possible complications during pregnancy. In this article we will look at how many ultrasound in pregnancy are done in different countries, in which cases the number of studies can increase, and why an interesting situation is screened for different terms of bearing the baby.
How much ultrasound in pregnancy should I do?
All ultrasound during the bearing of a child can be divided into two types: planned and unplanned. The answer to the question of how many planned ultrasound in pregnancy depends on the country in which the woman is in the register. For example, in Russia, the order of the Ministry of Health recommends that all future mothers do three screening ultrasound for 12-14 weeks, 20-22 weeks, 32-34 weeks. This is necessary for prenatal diagnosis of congenital and hereditary diseases in children. But in the US and England, women waiting for a child are scheduled to do only two ultrasound: between 11-14 weeks and 18-22 weeks. If the second study showed no abnormalities in the development of the baby, and the pregnant woman feels well and does not complain about anything, then no more ultrasound is performed.
In cases when a woman who carries a child turns to a obstetrician-gynecologist with complaints about spotting from the genital tracts or pulling pains in the lower abdomen, she is immediately sent to an unscheduled ultrasound to find out the cause of the pathology. In such situations it is impossible to say exactly how many times ultrasound in pregnancy will be done, as the number of studies depends on the medical need for their conduct.
What does ultrasound show on different dates?
We have already examined how many ultrasound in pregnancy make on the recommendation of the Ministry of Health, now let's find out why we need to conduct research on different terms.
In most cases, the first ultrasound of a child is carried out at a period of 11-14 weeks. By this time the fetus is practically formed, only the dimensions of its internal organs are small. Therefore, in detail to consider their structure is not yet possible. But for some indicators, you can determine whether the baby has developmental defects in the brain, defects in the anterior abdominal wall or skull, the risk of Down syndrome or chromosomal pathology, and count the number of limbs.
The fact that the first planned study should be carried out at the end of the first trimester of bearing a child does not mean that we know how much an ultrasound is made during pregnancy in the first months. There are indications that a woman may need several ultrasound in this period, we will list them:
- the date of the last menstruation is unknown;
- pregnancy occurred as a result of IVF;
- the woman had spontaneous abortion( miscarriage);
- a woman had an ectopic pregnancy;
- pregnant worried pain in the lower abdomen;
- in the pregnant woman had spotting from the genital tract.
The second ultrasound during the bearing of the baby is done at a period of 20-22 weeks. During this period it is already possible to assess the condition of the child's internal organs and to identify the developmental defects. If in the ultrasound conclusion it is written that there is a suspicion of the fetus having developmental defects, then it is unequivocal to say how many times ultrasound in pregnancy it will be necessary to do, it is impossible. Since the research will be conducted every week until the suspicion is removed or the presence of a defect is confirmed. Also on ultrasound in the second trimester, the placenta( location, structure, thickness) and the amount of amniotic fluid are assessed.
We already know how many planned ultrasound in pregnancy should be done - three. The last planned study is carried out at 32-34 weeks. When screening in the third trimester, the growth and weight of the fetus are evaluated, and the internal organs of the baby are reexamined, since there are malformations that appear after 24 weeks. It should be understood that ultrasound is not an ideal method of investigation, and therefore, for a number of reasons, may not detect all defects in the development of the fetus. We list the factors that influence the accuracy of ultrasound:
- no clinical signs of malformation in the baby;
- overweight women in the state;
- a small amount of amniotic fluid;
- uncomfortable position of the child, in which it is impossible to clearly consider certain structures.
How much ultrasound in pregnancy in the late term is necessary to do, the obstetrician-gynecologist decides. Since in some cases, depending on the health status and complaints of the expectant mother, as well as the severity of the interesting situation, additional research may be needed. Let's list the reasons why the doctor can prescribe a repeated ultrasound:
- assessment of the placenta and cervix;
- an update of the position of the child in the womb;
- suspicion of leakage of amniotic fluid;
- mismatch of the uterus with the expected duration of pregnancy;
- spotting from the genital tract;
- pain in the lower abdomen.
In this article we examined how many planned ultrasound in pregnancy, and in what situations it is necessary to conduct additional studies, and also learned what it is for future mothers to undergo this type of examination. Early diagnosis of possible complications during pregnancy will allow doctors to prescribe a woman in the position necessary treatment, and thus preserve the health and life of the baby.