The Importance of Ultrasounds Early in Pregnancy

healthcare worker performing an obstetrical ultrasound

An obstetric ultrasound is a vital tool for assessing the wellness of mother and baby alike during a pregnancy. They are particularly important early in pregnancy, as a means of first confirming the pregnancy, then assessing whether the pregnancy is viable and later monitoring your baby’s development. Ultrasounds also provide you a first glimpse of your growing child.

Here are just a few reasons ultrasounds are so important during the first trimester of pregnancy…

Confirm Your Pregnancy

Home pregnancy tests are a common first step for women who believe they may be pregnant. To be 100% certain, however, requires a medical pregnancy test followed by pregnancy confirmation ultrasound.

Rule Out an Ectopic Pregnancy

An ectopic pregnancy occurs when the fetus doesn’t attach properly to the uterus, instead often lodging in the fallopian tube. This typically requires immediate medical attention. An ultrasound is critical for diagnosing this condition, as the symptoms may not otherwise be apparent.

If your healthcare worker suspects an ectopic pregnancy, he or she will discuss your options with you and help you find the best course of action.

Check for a Heartbeat

An ultrasound can detect your baby’s heartbeat as early as six weeks. At that stage, the heart beats very quickly, at around 160-180 beats per minute. And if the doctor detects multiple heartbeats, twins or triplets may be in your future. In fact, an ultrasound is the only way to know with certainty at this stage if you’re carrying multiples.

Estimate The Baby’s Due Date

Early in a pregnancy, an ultrasound is one of the most accurate tools for estimating due dates. The ultrasound allows the doctor to measure your baby’s crown-rump length – the length of the fetus from one end to the other, in order to estimate how far along you are in the pregnancy.

Monitor Your Baby’s Development

Your healthcare worker will use ultrasounds to regularly assess your baby’s position in the womb, how much amniotic fluid is around the baby, and the location of the placenta. Potential birth defects and anatomical abnormalities may also be identified via ultrasound.

If you suspect you may be pregnant, Sira offers free medical pregnancy testing and pregnancy confirmation ultrasounds. There’s no insurance required, and your results are confidential. Contact Sira in Gainesville today 352-377-4947 to schedule your appointment.

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