Back to Your pregnancy and baby guide. Ultrasound scans use sound waves to build a picture of the baby in the womb. The scans are painless, have no known side effects on mothers or babies, and can be carried out at any stage of pregnancy. Talk to your midwife, GP or obstetrician about any concerns you have. For many women, ultrasound scans are the highlight of pregnancy. It's very exciting to "see" your baby in the womb, often moving their hands and legs. Having a scan in pregnancy is usually a happy event, but be aware that ultrasound scans may detect some serious abnormalities, so try to be prepared for that information.
See What if a screening test shows a possible problem? Most scans are carried out by specially trained staff called sonographers. The scan is carried out in a dimly lit room so the sonographer is able to get good images of your baby. First you'll be asked to lie on a couch. You'll then be asked to lower your skirt or trousers to your hips and raise your top to your chest. The sonographer will put ultrasound gel on your tummy and tuck tissue paper
How many weeks do you have a hookup scan your clothing to protect it from the gel.
The gel makes sure there is good contact between the machine and your skin.
The sonographer passes a probe over your skin. A black and white picture of the baby will appear on the ultrasound screen. During the examination, sonographers need to keep the screen in a position that gives them a good view of the baby.
The sonographer will carefully examine your baby's body.
Having the scan does not hurt, but "How many weeks do you have a hookup scan" sonographer may need to apply slight pressure on your tummy to get the best views of the baby. However, the sonographer may not be able to get good views if your baby is lying in an awkward position or moving around a lot.
If it's difficult to get a good image, the scan may take longer or have to be repeated at another time. There are no known risks to the baby or the mother from having an ultrasound scan, but it is important that you consider carefully whether to have the scan or not. This is because the scan can provide information that may mean you have to make further important decisions. For example, you may be offered further tests, such as amniocentesis, that have a risk of miscarriage.
Hospitals in England offer all pregnant women at least 2 ultrasound scans during their pregnancy:. The first scan is sometimes called the dating scan. The sonographer estimates when your baby is due the estimated date of delivery, or EDD based on the baby's measurements.
The dating scan can include a nuchal translucency NT scan, which is part of the combined screening test for Down's syndromeif you choose to have this screening.
This scan checks for structural abnormalities anomalies in the baby. Some women be offered more than two scans, depending on their health and their pregnancy.
No, not if you don't want to. The dating scan and anomaly scan are offered to all women, but you don't have to accept them. Your choice will be respected if you decide not to have the scans, and your antenatal care will continue as normal. You'll be given the chance to discuss it with your maternity team before making your decision. Most hospitals do not allow children to attend scans as childcare is not usually available.
Please ask your hospital about this before your appointment. Remember, an ultrasound scan is an important medical examination and it is treated in the same way as any other hospital investigation. Ultrasound scans can sometimes find problems with the baby. Most scans show that the baby is developing normally and no problems are found. This is because most babies are healthy and do not have abnormalities.
You can continue with your routine antenatal care. If a problem is found or suspected, the sonographer may ask for a second opinion from another member of staff.
You might be offered another test to find out for certain if there is a problem. If you're offered further tests, you will be given more information about them so you can decide whether or not you want to have them.
You'll be able to discuss this with your midwife or consultant. If you want to find out the sex of your baby, you can usually do so during the mid-pregnancy scan but this depends on the policy of your hospital.
For example, if your baby is lying in an awkward position, it may be difficult or impossible to tell. Some hospitals have a policy of not telling patients the sex of their baby. Speak to your sonographer or midwife to find out more.
You will need to check if your hospital provides this service. If they do, there may be a charge. Skip to main content. Your pregnancy and baby guide. Main navigation Getting pregnant Secrets to success Healthy diet Planning: When you can get pregnant Signs and symptoms When you can take a test Finding out Problems Help if you're not getting pregnant Fertility tests Fertility treatments Work out your due date When pregnancy goes wrong Sign up for weekly pregnancy emails.
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How long will a scan take? Can ultrasound harm my baby?
When are scans offered? When will I get the results? Do I have to have scans? What can a scan do? Can I bring anyone in? What if everything looks normal?
What if there's a possible problem? Is it a girl or a boy?
Can I have a picture? What happens at a scan and what will they tell me? Ultrasound scans in pregnancy Ultrasound scans use sound waves to build a picture of the baby in the womb.
What will happen at the scan? Can an ultrasound scan harm me or my baby? Hospitals in England offer all pregnant women at least 2 ultrasound scans during their pregnancy: The sonographer will be able to tell you the results of the scan at the time.
Do I have to have ultrasound scans? What can an ultrasound scan be used for? An ultrasound scan can be used to: You may like someone to come with you to the scan appointment. If everything appears normal, what happens next?
If the scan finds there might be a problem, what happens next?