For many women, especially after 8 weeks gestation, sufficient information about the baby may be obtained with transabdominal ultrasound only.
First Trimester / Dating Ultrasound
However, in the early pregnancy, the developing embryo is very small at 6 weeks gestation, the baby is only mm long and a transvaginal ultrasound may be required to get a better image of the baby. Transvaginal ultrasound is safe and commonly performed during all stages of pregnancy, including the first trimester. It will not harm you or your baby. Transabdominal ultrasound involves scanning through your lower abdomen.
A small amount of ultrasound gel is put on the skin of the lower abdomen, with the ultrasound probe then scanning through this gel. The gel helps improve contact between the probe and your skin. Transvaginal ultrasound is an internal ultrasound. It involves scanning with the ultrasound probe lying in the vagina. Transvaginal ultrasound usually produces better and clearer images of the female pelvic organs including the developing pregnancy, because the ultrasound probe lies closer to these structures.
The transvaginal ultrasound probe is thin, about 2cm diameter. The probe is covered with a disposable protective sheath. A small amount of ultrasound gel is placed on the end of this probe. The probe is then gently inserted a short distance into the vagina. All transvaginal probes have been cleaned and sterilised according to recommended protocols. Performing the transvaginal ultrasound usually causes less discomfort than a pap smear.
No analgesia is required for this ultrasound. Your privacy will always be respected during your ultrasound, especially the transvaginal examination. You will have a large towel covering your lower body, in addition to wearing a gown during the transvaginal ultrasound. You will always have a choice about whether transvaginal ultrasound is performed. If you have concerns about transvaginal ultrasound, please discuss this with your sonographer before your ultrasound begins. We usually get better images during transabdominal ultrasound if the bladder is partially filled, so to help your examination we ask you to drink water prior to the assessment.
First Trimester / Dating Ultrasound | Advanced Women's Imaging
Please empty your bladder 1 hour before your appointment, drink 2 glasses of water and try not to empty your bladder again until after your appointment. A full bladder moves bowel out from the pelvis into the abdomen, helping visualisation of the pregnancy, uterus and ovaries. Your bladder should not be so full that it causes pain. If your bladder is very full and painful, you should empty a small amount so you are more comfortable.
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You will be able to empty your bladder after the transabdominal ultrasound is completed and before the transvaginal ultrasound begins if transvaginal ultrasound is required. Sometimes the results of a first trimester scan may be inconclusive or uncertain, and need to be combined with your clinical history and blood tests serum BhCG.
Some women need to return for another ultrasound scan a few weeks later to assess the progress of the pregnancy, or they may require another blood test serial serum BhCG. We realise this is often an anxious time for parents, while they wait for the next ultrasound to check on their baby.
We will do our best to answer your questions and minimise your anxiety. How is a dating scan performed? What preparation do I need to do for a dating scan? Check with your ultrasound clinic for any preparation you need to do prior to the scan.
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The scan will take 5—10 minutes to perform. What will I learn from a dating scan? At a dating scan you will also be able to: Australian Government Department of Health Guidelines for the use of ultrasound in the management of obstetric conditions. Opens in a new window. BabyCenter Australia Dating scans. BabyCenter Australia Pregnancy ultrasound scans: Was this article helpful? Find out about early ultrasounds at weeks, sometimes called dating scans.
Pregnancy tests information video myVMC. You may have had a pregnancy scan recently which shows that your baby has a club foot or feet.
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An Early Pregnancy Scan sometimes also called a Viability Scan or Dating Scan provides reassurance in this very early stage of your pregnancy. A pregnancy can be seen from as early as 6 weeks from the first day of your last period LMP and not the date of conception. If you have had any bleeding or pain or any other symptoms then this scan will accurately confirm viability. Sometimes it is requested by a doctor or midwife to confirm that your pregnancy is healthy in this case your scan is often called a viability scan and to calculate the date when your baby is due usually referred to as a dating scan.
It can also be performed to confirm the results of a pregnancy test or just to provide you with some reassurance that all is progressing as it should be. At MUMS we are very proud of our professional experienced and caring staff who will ensure that you receive the best care possible and give advice and support where appropriate. Your reasons for having an Early Pregnancy Scan are to: Early Pregnancy Scans are normally performed trans-abdominally through your tummy however an internal vaginal scan may be required at earlier gestations ie weeks to see all the necessary detail, or if your womb tilts backwards retroverted.
We will always try to scan trans-abdominally first but if we need to do an internal scan then this will not be harmful in any way to the baby and would be discussed prior to having the scan. Ultrasound scans are painless but the gel used within the examination can feel a little cold and you may feel a little discomfort when the ultrasound probe presses on your tummy if you have a very full bladder.