Baby dating ultrasound
Early Pregnancy Scans are normally performed trans-abdominally (through your tummy) however an internal (vaginal) scan may be required at earlier gestations ie 6-7 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.
The software has certain measurement scales based on data from large populations, and your baby’s measurements are put into this scale.
In other words, by comparing your baby’s measurements to the data from this large collection of measurements, the ultrasound can then tell how far along your baby is.
Early Pregnancy Scans are not routinely offered on the NHS but you may have one privately without affecting your NHS entitlement.
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.
This creates error in that the baby will compute out to be further along than he or she really is.
This is the only time that this scan can be performed.
During this scan we will take measurements of your baby, specifically a small fluid area behind the baby’s neck called the nuchal translucency.
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.