Ultrasounds during Pregnancy

Pregnancy is a difficult and important phase in a woman’s life. During these 9 months, not only do women have to bear a lot of pain and discomfort, but they have to make every choice keeping in mind the welfare of the baby first. Any misstep can have a lot of potential ramifications for not just their wellbeing, but especially the baby’s. 

Lifestyle habits and dietary choices are all crucial during pregnancy, but so is keeping up with proper medical guidance. It is imperative for women to follow through with their appointments with their OB-GYN. 

The first-time mothers have it harder, considering they lack sufficient knowledge and experience. However, this should not dissuade them from having a candid discussion with their doctor about anything their body is going through that is a matter of concern for them.

Other important aspect to keep note throughout the pregnancy is to timely get the tests. These are extremely important to monitor the health of the baby and the mother. Timely intervention can be potentially lifesaving. They also enable the doctor to monitor the growth of the baby and determine the due date. 

Therefore, all pregnant women should keep up with their ultrasound schedules. Also, all women getting an ultrasound in Lahore should pay special attention to the lab. Only well-reputed radiology facilities should be consulted as imaging tests are highly contingent on the technology used. 

There are a number of mandatory ultrasounds that all women should expect during their pregnancy: 

Ultrasounds during the first Trimester

One of the basic reasons for doing an ultrasound during the week 0-12 is to confirm pregnancy. There are many cases of false positives, and this sonogram is thus very important. It is also important to determine the fetal heartbeat, check if there are multiple babies, and determine the due date. However, generally, the ultrasound to determine the gestational age –‘dating ultrasound’—is conducted in the 10-13 weeks of pregnancy. 

It also is important for the doctor to diagnose an ectopic pregnancy or fetal abnormalities. In those cases where doctors perceive it to be a high-risk pregnancy, women might be also be prescribe a transvaginal ultrasound, also known as TVS. In this, a strobe is pushed inside of the vagina to produce cleared images that are helpful in pointing out any anomalies. 

Ultrasounds during the second Trimester

During weeks 14-20, the Nuchal Translucency Ultrasound, or NT is conducted to find any chromosomal abnormalities like Down’s Syndrome. It is necessary for women over the age of 35 to get this ultrasound done, as the risks are greater for them. 

Another ultrasound that is conducted during the second trimester, at the 20-week mark, is the anomaly scan. It is done to monitor the growth of the baby; at this stage, the hands, feet, heartbeat, organs etc. can be observed. The measurements of the organs are also noted down.

Moreover, the sonographer also looks for any birth defects and abnormalities, for example,  spinal issues like spina bifida, limb issues, kidney diseases, muscular issues, heart problems etc. in the baby.  It is important to know if there is any issue with the baby so that the parents and the staff can make arrangements accordingly. The sex of the baby can also be confirmed during this ultrasound.  

Ultrasounds during the third Trimester

Unless it’s a high-risk pregnancy, women do not necessarily need an ultrasound in their third trimester.  Only in case there is a complaint like decreased fetal movement or any bleeding etc. do women need to get an ultrasound in Karachi. But it varies from condition to condition, and therefore the executive decision rests with the doctor.