What is the purpose of an ultrasound during pregnancy?

whats the purpose of an ultrasound?
can it tell if your baby is going to have a birth defect of any kind??? & can it tell if everything is going great with the pregnancny

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VILLEDA88

Asked by VILLEDA88 at 9:44 AM on Oct. 14, 2008 in Pregnancy

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This question is closed and filed in the CafeMom Encyclopedia.
Answers (9)
  • the ultrasound is to assess fetal growth and progress. it can detect some defects, such as heart problems, missing kidneys, tumors, etc.
    Fanta-Mommy

    Answer by Fanta-Mommy at 9:47 AM on Oct. 14, 2008

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  • An ultrasound can USUALLY tell if something will be wrong with the baby, ie a birth defect. However, it can't detect everything, so an ultrasound is NOT a guarantee that your baby will be 'perfect'........
    Not trying to make you worried tho..the chances of having a disabled child are very slight.

    lovin_being_mom

    Answer by lovin_being_mom at 9:59 AM on Oct. 14, 2008

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  • I homebirth so we don't do ultrasounds. They are not that importnat. I mean, to me, I don't want to know if my baby will have a defect. That is just one more t hing for me to stress over. Even if I knew about the defect, it's not like I would terminate the pregnancy, so I'd rather not have to be scared aout that. Just my opinion.
    navy-wife

    Answer by navy-wife at 9:59 AM on Oct. 14, 2008

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  • Oh yes, they are a great device. They check growth to make sure abby is where they should be developmentally. But they can be scary too. When I was pregnant with my last baby the doctor had sent me to a specialist. All I knew was that I was getting 3D ultra sounds for free so I was super excited. I was hooked up to all sorts of monitors and could see my baby all around me on different screens. When they doc walked in he said "Your baby has a brain." WHAT!?!? LOL They had sent me to this place to see if my baby had a brain lol. I guess they couldnt find it on the regular ultra sound machine in doc office!!
    LovinEveryDay

    Answer by LovinEveryDay at 10:08 AM on Oct. 14, 2008

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  • I personally don't like them. I do see how they can be usefull with certain birth defects but I feel they are abused by OB's and mothers. Ultrasounds are NOT reliable for measurements, or dates, and going back just to find out the sex, is stupid. They are often wrong and that usually leads to unnecessery c-sections. I feel that it is wrong to put the lives of their paitents in danger based on readings that you know may be wrong.
    Forget-me-not

    Answer by Forget-me-not at 12:13 PM on Oct. 14, 2008

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  • I also think ultrasounds are great for the usual screening for growth and defects but seriously overused by some. Even though I would not abort due to a defect I would want to know of there was one so that the staff could be prepared for any complications or plan medical treatment ASAP. It can also detect problems with the placenta, or fibroids in the uterus that may cause excessive bleeding after birth.
    mamapotter

    Answer by mamapotter at 12:33 PM on Oct. 14, 2008

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  • I don't like how they are over used. They haven't proven that they are safe and yet if you have a high risk pregnancy they want you to have one every visit... some doctors do that anyway. The ultrasound tech I had with my u/s (had no idea when I got pregnant, 1 period in 2 years) said that they haven't test to see if they mess with the babies heartbeat, so they don't like to do many of them.
    reflect1light

    Answer by reflect1light at 12:35 PM on Oct. 14, 2008

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  • On October 29th, I went for a routine ultrasound and well I found out my baby had died at about 16 weeks. Well the day before everything was fine because I went for my prenatal and the nurse found a wonderful heart beat at 150bmp. I have had abdominal and vaginal ultrasound, neither one is painful . I do think the vaginal is a little more intrusive because you have to put the wand in yourself in most cases. But the abdominal ultrasound seems easier and you feel much more relaxed.
    mom2hailie

    Answer by mom2hailie at 1:54 AM on Nov. 9, 2009

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  • an ultrasound is used to "verify" an EDD, and to scan for possible defects or problems, and (of course) to check for sex, if the parents want to know. in a late preg, it can be useful for checking the amniotic levels.

    it is not a perfect tool, though; Fundal height measurement is just as useful for EDD(that's when your practitioner measures how far above your pelvic bone the uteris extends.) and if you are scanning to find out about defects, you have to ask yourself what, if anything, you would do if you found them. I had one during my first pregnancy, and spent six weeks worrying over a problem they saw while I waited for a specialists appointment, only to spend thirty seconds in the room with the guy who said "your baby is perfect, what are you doing here?" (she had a full rectum.) ;-)
    I realized that if it HAD been a defect, I wouldn't have terminated, I would have waited to see what happened, so
    I skipped it pregs 2&3.
    MamaBird76

    Answer by MamaBird76 at 4:14 PM on Jan. 30, 2010

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