An ultrasound during pregnancy, how is that actually done and why is it done? An ultrasound, or ultrasound scan is a technique that uses sound waves. By moving these waves through the body we are able to visualize our organs well. The ultrasound device requires good guidance for this. This happens with a little gel on a transducer. It is then placed on your stomach. That does not hurt and is harmless. Tip! A full bladder presses against your uterus and therefore the fetus is more visible.
Why make an ultrasound during pregnancy?
An ultrasound is very important to check the growth of a fetus and to check the organs of the baby. They also check whether your uterus looks good and whether the heart of the baby is correct. Maybe it's two babies, or three! The first ultrasound is of course the most exciting because then they tell you the calculated delivery date. Exciting! In most obstetric practices you can do one echo during pregnancy have it made. Sometimes you have to go to a gynecologist in the hospital.
When is the first ultrasound?
A first ultrasound happens soon after you discover that you are pregnant. Most women are then between 5 and 8 weeks pregnant. Sometimes there is nothing to see on such a first ultrasound. During a 5 or 6 week ultrasound it is quite normal that no heart can be heard yet. The gynecologist or midwife may choose to do an internal ultrasound. Sometimes even then there is too little to see to give a calculated date. Do not worry, that's very normal.
The 8 weeks ultrasound
For many, this is the first echo. With a bit of luck you can see your baby's arms and legs during the 8 weeks ultrasound. You can do this with the 10-week ultrasound. You also see the heart beat. Very special.
What is so special about the 12-week ultrasound?
The 12-week ultrasound is a kind of milestone. The important organs of your child must all be there now. The baby is now 'finished' and only needs to grow. After this ultrasound, the 20-week ultrasound is the most important.
What is a pretecho?
A fun ultrasound is there for fun. It has no medical reason and is therefore not reimbursed by basic insurance. You can choose from a 2D ultrasound, 3D ultrasound or 4D ultrasound.
With a 4D ultrasound you get a pretty good picture of what your child will look like. If you ask me, the surprise will be finished. Yet more and more couples choose to learn about their child as much as possible. I did not want to know it all! That tension really belonged to me.
Most pretech ultrasounds are done between 16 and 25 weeks. From 16 weeks of pregnancy, the sex of your child is visible, provided he or she is well.
If the baby is stubborn and does not cooperate, the gender can still be looked at during the 20-week ultrasound. Later in your pregnancy, around 30 weeks, the gynecologist or midwife will check with a final ultrasound whether your child has already descended.
Because my midwife herself has an ultrasound device (and because I know her personally) she made me an ultrasound more often than was actually necessary. And as an ultrasound expert, I can tell you: 'All echoes are special, every time'. So enjoy your ultrasound during pregnancy!