A woman getting ultrasound diagnostic from doctor

You're on your way to welcoming a little bundle of joy into your life and you've heard about baby ultrasounds. But when and why are these done during a pregnancy?

An ultrasound uses audio waves to create an image and is a safe and effective tool in prenatal care. It can monitor growth and track whether the baby is developing as expected, with a healthy heartbeat, proper organ formation, and the right size for their gestational age. An ultrasound can also look for multiple fetuses, like twins or triplets.

A pregnancy ultrasound can also be a diagnostic tool to help identify any potential issues or abnormalities with your baby. Certain birth defects or genetic conditions might be detected through these scans, allowing parents and doctors to prepare for the best possible care once the baby arrives. An ultrasound can also assess the health of the placenta and look for abnormal amniotic fluid levels that can sometimes lead to complications.

In a typical pregnancy, you’ll have two ultrasounds. The first is called an “early” or “dating” ultrasound which usually takes place near the end of the first trimester of pregnancy.  This is used to measure the size of the fetus and help confirm gestational age and due date.

At about 20 weeks, you’ll have an “anatomy” ultrasound to detect any serious conditions with the baby. This is also when some parents want to determine the baby’s sex by looking at the genitals. If your pregnancy is progressing well with no complications, this may be your last ultrasound before your child is born.

Remember to have your pregnancy ultrasound done at a medical office and read by a certified technician or health care provider. Retail ultrasound centers located at the mall or in a storefront may not provide accurate results.

If you’ve just learned that you’re pregnant or need to find a women’s health care provider, the team at Northline Women’s Health Center is ready to serve you in Southgate and Brownstown. Learn more about our obstetrics services or request an appointment today.

Northline Women's Health Center Locations:

15675 Northline Road

Southgate, MI 48195

(734) 282-3600
(734) 282-3603 - Fax

23050 West Road, Suite 210

Brownstown Twp., MI 48183

(734) 362-7000
(734) 362-7077 - Fax