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Early ultrasounds, An important part of prenatal care

By Rosy s.
Last Update on 17 Feb '13

Early ultrasounds, An important part of prenatal care For many moms-to-be, a first ultrasound is a life changing experience -- it can also be a life saving moment for the child they're carrying.

While ultrasounds have been used in prenatal care for many years, new technology is changing the face of obstetrical care. Today, doctors can use 3D and 4D imaging capabilities along with "conventional" 2D ultrasound, allowing them to examine everything from a baby's developing brain to its arms and legs. They can even see a fetal heart the size of a dime.

These new capabilities can help doctors detect problems that could put babies at risk.

"Thanks to early detection through prenatal care, medicine can often save at-risk babies who would have been lost a generation ago,"

said Dr. Jacques Abramowicz, Frances T. and Lester B. Knight professor, director of Ob/Gyn Ultrasound and Co-Director of the Rush Fetal and Neonatal Medicine Center in Chicago. "But we can only make a difference if moms take the initiative to see their doctors and see them early in their pregnancy."

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 4 million American women will give birth this year, and nearly one-third will experience some kind of complication. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Health Resources and Services Administration says babies born to mothers who receive no prenatal care are five times more likely to die and three times more likely to be born at low birth weight than those whose mothers receive prenatal care.
Prenatal care provides a wide range of support, including medical care, education and counseling. Ultrasound is often a critical part of that all-important care.

By providing pregnant women "with important information and sometimes an early warning if there could be a bump in the road ahead, ultrasound aids physicians in making better diagnoses, which helps moms make better choices for their babies and themselves,"

said Janice Blackwell, vice president, Ultrasound Global Marketing, for Philips Healthcare.
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Nicki Harris commented on 20 Mar '13
i have had 4 emergancy scans over the last month im ment to be 9 weeks and at every scan they couldnt see baby or heart beat the pregnancy is developing well yolk sac. fetal cord and fetal sac all going well but no baby or heartbeat can be seen. they want to terminate it am i wrong in refusing it? because im concerned that there is a baby there just they cant see it. is it true that a baby still cant be seen at 9 weeks. please can someone give me answers im going insane with all this stress and i dont want to terminate something that could well be a life. please email me answers at akirag2010@hotmail.com