Ultrasound Scans during pregnancy provide you and your doctor with reliable information that can be helpful to assess and analyse the progress and health of your pregnancy. Read about the different kinds of scans that are required during pregnancy in this article.
What Is an Ultrasound Scan?
Before reading about the pregnancy scan list, let us understand an ultrasound. An ultrasound scan sends high-frequency sound waves to your womb. These high-frequency sound waves reflect echoes to a computer system that converts these echoes into video images. The video images display the shape, position, and movements of the baby. It may also reveal any malformations or abnormalities in the developing baby.
In the digital image of an ultrasound scan, you will see some white, grey, and black areas. White areas are the ones that reflect the high-frequency waves the most, the hard tissues like bones. Grey areas are the low sound-reflecting sites such as soft tissues; black areas are the ones that do not reflect the high-frequency sound waves at all, such as amniotic fluid.
An ultrasound scan tests the beating of your baby's heart as well as the anatomy of their head, abdominal wall, and limbs. These days, 3D and 4D pregnancy time scan lists are gaining popularity as they also provide you with a complete and near-to-real image of your baby.
Is Ultrasound in Pregnancy Safe?
Are the different lists of ultrasound during pregnancy safe? The ultrasounds are safe and are very low in risk as they do not involve radiation like X-rays. However, unnecessary ultrasound scans should be avoided, as per medical guidelines. Studies linking ultrasound with pregnancy outcome problems are rare.
List of Scans During Pregnancy
During pregnancy, you will mostly hear about ultrasound scans and might think there is only one of its type. However, ultrasound scans are of various types. The list of scans during pregnancy are:
1. The Date Estimating Scan
A sonography scan estimates the date when your baby will see the world. It is referred to as a date estimating scan. It is done during 8-14 weeks of pregnancy. This scan is done to find out the pregnancy delivery date. It checks the measurement of your baby, position, and number of babies.
2. Screening Scan
It is a scan to screen and diagnose a number of congenital abnormalities and syndromes. It is usually done at the 10-14 weeks of pregnancy to screen any abnormalities in the developing baby. It is frequently carried out along with the date estimating scan. This type of scan involves sonography along with a blood test.
3. The Scan for Knowing Gender
It is mostly carried out around 20 weeks of your pregnancy. However, it is prohibited in India to check the gender of your developing baby through an ultrasound scan.
4. The Anomaly Scan
Sonography done during 18-20 weeks of your pregnancy is for testing the structural and developmental abnormalities in the developing baby. It is also for screening HIV, syphilis, and hepatitis B.
5. Scans during Third-trimester
Third-trimester is a good way to check the growth of your baby, the baby's heart, placenta activity, and the position in which your baby is in the womb.
6. 2D Scans
Black and white sonography images are the ones that everyone is familiar with. It displays the gestation, growth, heartbeat, development, and size of your baby.
7. 3D Scans
To get a more real-life image of your baby, you should get a 3D scan done. It is done during 26-30 weeks of your pregnancy and helps to detect the height, width, and depth of your baby. Through these scans, you can get the shape of your baby's facial characteristics.
8. 4D Scans
These scans show a video rather than an image. In all other ways, they are similar to a 3D scan. However, it is clearer and more detailed compared to a 3D scan. It is done around 26 weeks of pregnancy.
9. Transvaginal Scans
It is an internal scan done at the earliest stages of your pregnancy. It involves passing a small probe inside the vagina.
As the name suggests, it is done to detect any heart problems. It reveals the shape, structure, and size of the heart of your baby.
How Much Does an Ultrasound Cost?
Ultrasound scans are not cheap. Depending on your location and the hospital, the prices for your ultrasound may vary. The prices may also vary based on the week in which the ultrasound is being performed. In India, a level 1 pregnancy scan may cost between 600-1500 INR.
Summing Up on List of Scans During Pregnancy
An ultrasound scan is a low-risk, non-invasive, and no-pain procedure. It is essential to check the progress of your baby's health, growth, and development, and an ultrasound is a good and accurate way to check the abnormalities, if any, in the developing baby and plan accordingly.
- Jørgen Arendt Jensen, March 2007; Medical ultrasound imaging - https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17092547/
- Aladin Carovac, Fahrudin Smajlovic, September 2011; Application of Ultrasound in Medicine - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/labs/pmc/articles/PMC3564184/