An ultrasound exam is the most commonly used diagnostic procedure to ensure you have a viable intrauterine pregnancy. Ultrasound is important in pregnancy, it allows the medical provider to ensure that you have a healthy viable pregnancy. Depending on when it’s done and your baby’s position, you may be able to see his/her heartbeat, limbs, and other body parts. When performing an ultrasound, the medical provider will be looking for three things: the location of the pregnancy, the measurements, and measuring any fetal cardiac activity.
There are two types of ultrasounds: An abdominal and transvaginal ultrasound. Depending on how far along you are, the licensed physician may choose to perform both with your consent. Whether or not you are clinically eligible for a ultrasound will be determined at the time of the appointment.
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If I have a positive pregnancy test, am I guaranteed an ultrasound?
We can’t guarantee an ultrasound for every positive pregnancy test because a sonogram is not the most accurate way to confirm a viable pregnancy in the very early stages of pregnancy. There is a high likelihood we will be able to perform one, but if not, we will schedule you for a date within a week or two.
Why do I need an ultrasound?
An ultrasound is important as it helps confirm an intrauterine pregnancy, viability (heartrate), and gestational age. Ultrasound is also useful as it can determine whether there is an ectopic pregnancy. An ectopic pregnancy occurs when the fertilized egg attaches itself in a place other than inside the uterus. An ectopic pregnancy cannot develop properly and patient will need to seek medical attention.
What do I need to do before my appointment?
Before your appointment, you need to drink 32 oz (4 cups) of water one hour before your scheduled appointment, as a full bladder allows for optimal ultrasound images. If the licensed physician decides to also do a transvaginal ultrasound, you will empty your bladder prior to this exam.
Do you perform ultrasounds for me to see the gender?
Generally, the gender cannot be revealed during a 2D ultrasound until you are around 16 weeks gestation. By this point, we would refer you to your OBGYN or have an MD perform this ultrasound.