During your pregnancy, several ultrasound examinations are performed to monitor the development of your unborn child. The maternity guidelines provide three routine tests in Germany: in the 9 to 12 week of pregnancy (SSW), in the 19th week of up 22 of 29 up 32. SSW.
The Sonography (ultrasound) is a medical examination of the organs of the embryo via video on a screen are mapped. The Sonography is done over the belly (Abdominalsonographie), or through the vagina (Vaginalsonographie).
Who performs the ultrasound?
The ultrasound performed by a radiologist, i.e. by a doctor who specializes in ultrasound examinations. The investigation can be made in a Radiology practice, the gynaecologist or the hospital.
Definitely, the ultrasound screening must be initiated by a doctor:
Out of the question, to contact only because you would like to watch as the baby moves a radiologist!
How a Sonography on?
The radiologist carries gel on the abdominal skin and then glides with the transducer over the belly to examine the organs through the abdominal wall through. This can he – follow as well as the pregnant women – the investigation on a screen: the ultrasound transmitted by the probe is sent to the ultrasound device, analysed and depicted.
In some cases (especially in the early stages of pregnancy, i.e. before the 12th week), the examination of the vagina is performed to get a better picture of the embryo and its vital organs.
What is the purpose of the ultrasound examination?
The ultrasonography enables to examine the so-called ‘soft’ bodies of unborn babies: Lung, thyroid, liver, spleen, kidneys, etc… But also the blood vessels, ligaments, and nerves can be reviewed. Any anomalies can be identified by the ultrasound screening.
The Sonography is used also for surgical procedures, E.g. during the examination of amniotic fluid (amniocentesis).
Ultrasound and pregnancy
The Sonography allows “live” to follow the development of the embryo and to measure the growth of the baby.
The examination is completely painless and only small inconveniences associated with: the first ultrasound must be performed to ensure a better view of the uterus with a full bladder. The cold gel which is applied to the abdomen to facilitate back and forth sliding the probe can also be considered unpleasant.
How much does an ultrasound cost?
Usually the three ultrasound examinations carried out by the health insurance fund. Should check but definitely in advance with your insurance company or your private health insurer about the reimbursement of costs.
What do you see on the ultrasound?
The age of the embryo, as well as the probable date of birth can be determined at the first ultrasound. You can hear even the heartbeat of your baby at this stage! Furthermore, the radiologist measures the blood flow, he examines the position of the placenta as well as your internal sex organs and checks whether all right is General.
In the 5th month can be measured by the ultrasound the baby’s development and identified potential problems in advance.
In addition to these scheduled Checkup, you can perform the so-called neck fold measurement with if any irregularities were identified during the routine ultrasound. Neck wrinkles examination of the baby’s neck thickness is measured (neck thickness ultrasonic screening): the fold of skin in the neck is thicker than 5 mm is an increased risk that the fetal chromosomal damage like E.g. down syndrome (trisomy 21) or a heart defect has.
Also the skull circumference, abdominal muscles and the thigh bones are measured for the second ultrasound. Also the movements of the embryo (limbs, swallowing) and heart rhythm are measured to assess the future baby’s growth.
Also, the sex of the baby is generally at the second ultrasound.
This phase checks the growth of the baby. Further measurements are: size of placenta, amniotic fluid volume, position of the child head, functioning of institutions, movements and respiratory system of the baby.
Last ultrasound examination can be made thanks to the location of the baby also over the course of the delivery: a caesarean section is possibly necessary? Is a risk that the child during childbirth is in the breech position?
Good to know:
It is always possible to carry more than three ultrasound screenings if
the doctor needs this investigation for a detailed diagnosis.
Contact your insurance company to whether this additional Sonographies will also be refunded.