Pregnancy: should seven ultrasounds be performed?

In France, three ultrasounds are mandatory at different stages of pregnancy. The first allows to date the pregnancy, the second called morphological allows to control the fetus and the third is the last assessment before delivery.

In the United Kingdom, some specialists recommend carrying out seven ultrasounds as reported by the Daily Mail. According to supporters, it would be possible to avoid certain traumas and the realization of certain emergency cesarean sections.

A first ultrasound

More scans could quickly spot some malformations – including birth defects, abnormalities and the position of the baby before birth, assures Ms Richardson, a private sonographer, quoted by the Daily Mail. For her, pregnant women should perform a first ultrasound seven weeks after the start of pregnancy to check the baby’s heartbeat, detect a twin pregnancy, etc. For Kate Richardson, this earlier analysis is particularly useful for women suffering from pain, bleeding or who have already had a miscarriage or an ectopic pregnancy. The analysis can help reassure them and quickly detect any problems.

But, can the multiplication of ultrasounds represent a risk for the future mother or the baby? Not at all for the sonographer who recalls that sound waves used in these exams are unlike other scans, such as CT scans, because they do not involve radiation exposure.

unnecessary stress

Conversely, quoted by the Daily Mail, Tina Prendeville, midwife of the pregnancy charity Tommy’s, is against the fact of multiplying these examinations: “It is understandable that some parents are particularly anxious to check the development of their baby, particularly when they have experienced a loss, and some parents may choose to do this privately for reassurance.While a CT scan can provide reassurance at this time, having serial scans can cause unnecessary stress to some”.

Same story with the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists in the United Kingdom who say that additional ultrasounds are generally not necessary. Finally, some midwives are against unnecessary serial analyzes which could cause additional stress for parents.

Leave a Comment