Pregnancy ultrasound scans

An ultrasound is a standard procedure used during pregnancy. It produces images of what is happening inside the mother's and baby’s body during pregnancy. A baby’s gestation, heartbeat, growth, size and development can all be seen clearly using an ultrasound.

Detailed ultrasound scan carried to examine the structure of the baby is used to screen for physical and chromosomal abnormalities. Your consent is required to conduct these screening scans. We recommend three ultrasound scans during your pregnancy.

Ultrasound images are usually in black and white.

Are ultrasounds safe?

Many people worry about the safety of ultrasounds. However, pregnancy ultrasounds have been used for many years, and to date, there is no evidence that they harm either the mother or the baby. Since ultrasounds rely on sound waves and not radiation, as X-rays do, they are much less risky. If you have queries or concerns, please ask your provider.

How to prepare for an ultrasound

During ultrasounds earlier in the pregnancy, you may need to have a full bladder for us to get a clear view of your reproductive organs and the fetus. You should drink two to three glasses of water one hour before your scheduled ultrasound. You shouldn’t urinate before the ultrasound, so you arrive at your appointment with a full bladder.

What happens during an ultrasound

During an ultrasound, we will ask to lie down on a bed or examination. We will apply a special gel to the pelvic and abdomen area. The gel helps the sound waves travel properly. Next, a small wand, called a transducer, is placed onto your belly. We move the transducer to capture black and white images onto the ultrasound screen. We may also take measurements of the image on the screen, and we may ask you to hold your breath or move while we capture images. The ultrasound will help us check to see if the necessary images were captured and if they are clear. Finally, we wipe off the gel, and you can empty your bladder.