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You are here : home > Pregnancy > Medical Aspects of Pregnancy > Pregnancy Scans - II

Pregnancy Scans - II



Prathima Radhakrishnan
Conslutant in Foetal Medicine
MBBS MRCOG (UK)
Diploma in Obstetric Ultrasound (RCOG, UK)
Fellowship in Foetal Medicine (FMF, UK)


Dr. Prathima tells you what problems can be detected with a sonography, when additional check-ups are warranted, and more.


What are the problems that can be detected with a sonography?

On a scan, physical defects in the baby can be detected with much confidence and a high degree of accuracy. However, there are some indications, called 'markers', which are not structural defects in themselves but are kind of indirect clues to a possible underlying genetic or chromosomal disorder. Some of these markers are strongly associated with such chromosomal or genetic disorders whereas some are weakly associated. If any marker is seen on the scan, this will merit further investigation based on what is the marker, whether there are multiple markers, whether this has a strong or a weak association with the disorder, the age of the mother etc.


Are there certain women who require more sonography check-ups than others? Why is this?

If the mother has certain health problems (like high blood pressure, diabetes etc) or if her abdomen is too small or too large for the stage of pregnancy she is in, a scan is performed to assess the growth and well-being of the foetus. If a mother has had any previous children with abnormalities or if there is a family history of a certain abnormality, extra scans are often recommended in the current pregnancy to track every stage of the baby's development. This ensures early diagnosis of any problem, and also provides reassurance to the parents if the baby is growing normally. It really depends on the kind of problem and more importantly, if the scan can detect or give some leading clues to such a problem. Certain women may develop high blood pressure during pregnancy. A scan can also let you know if you are at risk for developing high blood pressure, and remedial measures can be taken at the outset.


What are the risks a sonography poses to the foetus? Is there any radiation in sonography?

There are no known harmful effects associated with the medical use of sonography. Widespread clinical use of diagnostic ultrasound for many years has not revealed any harmful effects at all. Studies in humans have revealed no direct link between the use of diagnostic ultrasound and any adverse outcomes. Yes, it is possible that biological effects may be identified in the future, but current information indicates that the benefits to patients far outweigh the risks, if any, that may be present. The 'low risk-benefit' ratio has been endorsed by AIUM (American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine) and RCOG (Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, UK), two world bodies that set standards in medicine.

No, sonography does not emit 'radiation'. They emit is 'sound waves' of higher frequency than the human ear can hear - hence the term 'ultrasound'.


When do you need a full bladder, and when do you need an empty bladder? Why does it matter?

When a scan is done by the abdominal route some sonologists prefer to have a full bladder to allow better visualisation of the organs behind the bladder like the uterus, an early pregnancy etc. For an 'internal' scan, empty bladder is preferable.

Do you have any questions you would like to ask Dr. Prathima Radhakrishnan? Email her at editor@indiaparenting.com.



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11 Comments
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Priya.3 years ago
Hi, I'm 24 weeks pregnant & I want to know that how man times scans are suggested. I had done my scans on 6th, 8th, 16th & 20th week of Pregnancy. And my doc has told me to again go for scan in 25th week. I don't have any problems in my pregnancy. Please let me know that scan in 25th week is necessary or can I postpone it to any other week & will be any other scan after this or it will be the last one. Please help
 
 
 
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melinda.4 years ago
Dear friends now i can testify about the good work of Dr Gboco because last 2months i contacted Email: gbocotemple@yahoo.com and i ask for a help from him because i and my husband has been married for the past 5years now and i have not be able to get pregnant and this has really been a problem to me and my mother in law, because she feel that i am not the right person for her son but last 2months after Dr Gboco cast a spell on me and he told me what i needed to do which i did although i never believe on spell before but since i had this spell cast on me i have been seeing changes in my life and now i am 2months pregnant and i am so happy and i have to do what i promise Dr that once i see the good result that i was going to testify of the good work so that anyone in need of help can contact him for help.
 
 
 
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cynthia.4 years ago
hi doc,
am 23 weeks pregnant & went for scanning, i was told that the fluid was to much, so it lead to having a premature baby & also that they could not detect the babies legs. Now my question is, is it possible to detect other parts of the babies body and fail to see the lower part. What could be the problem? pliz help
 
 
 
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abc.7 years ago
good info ..
 
 
 
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monisha.7 years ago
sometimes, it is pregnancy scams. i had my second child over 35, and the doc insisted i do an amino when there was no indication that anything was wrong. till i checked with my gynac who delivered my first baby ( at the ripe age of 33) who told me what to look out for in the triple marker test and amino was not needed.
 
 
 
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githa.7 years ago
monisha, that doesnt mean it's pregnancy 'scams.' it is normally always recommended to do an amnio after 35 bec chances of down syndrome dramatically increase. of course, there are some greedy doctors. my doctor told me there was no need to do an amnio after she checked all the markers in the regular scan. i was 34.
 
 
 
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Betty.7 years ago
i posted a letter to dr prathima, and i dont know where to find the answer, or even if it has been answered!! can anyone help?
 
 
 
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asha.7 years ago
dear prathima,

after 8mts of trials to get pregnant i had a urine test confirmation on 17th jul2008(my last menustral date is on 11/06/2008)
that i'm pregnant.but on 22nd jul 2008 i had spotting and advised by my gynic to go
for ultrasound, i.e exactly on 42nd day

the report says,
no intrauterine or extra uterine gestational sac
and later my gynic said of course there is a formation but not in the right shape,so she asked me to terminate the preg
by taking 2 vaginal tab.
but the news came to both of us as a shock so went to another gynic the next day for second opinion she asked me to "
wait and watch approach".but not advised to take bed rest,i came to know only now after reading the column in indian parenting.
but later on 25th jul my usual menustral cycle started(between the two days i had only white discharge).and doc didn't give me any proper reason for this miscarriage.

note: my pre-pregnancy test of vaginal scanning shows no trouble
my partner has 65million count per cubic
and he has 60% abnormal forms.he din't take any pills to incrrease the count before i could conceive.

now my doubts are,
1.is the miscarriage happened because of not taking enough bed rest?
2.should i go for any test for the genetic abnormalities?
3.when i can plan for the next pregnancy?
4.is the miscarriage is due to 60% abnormal forms?
5.is it possible for the sonography to show the correct formation on the 42nd day itself?
please reply and solve all my doubts and confusions ,i'm not depressed i don't want to do any other mistakes for my next conception
coz it's a very precious loss for us.
please do help me in clearing the doubts.
--
 
 
 
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