As a very safe and non-invasive procedure, ultrasounds are often the diagnostic choice that patients and doctors feel is the best solution.

Ultrasounds use sound waves to produce images of the inside of your body. They can be useful in diagnosing the causes of inflammation, pain, or infection in your organs. They are also used to examine and check up on an unborn child in pregnant women.

Physicians may also use an ultrasound to guide biopsies, assess heart conditions and assess the condition of a heart after a heart attack.

One of the major benefits of ultrasound scans is that they don’t use radiation. You are also required to have little or no preparation.

So, let’s look into some of the main ultrasound scans you may have.

Pregnancy

Pregnancy scanBeing pregnant is an exciting time, but it can also be worrying. Many women feel anxious, as they can’t see their baby and check up on them daily. This can leave you concerned about their well-being and growth.

Ultrasound scans during pregnancy are safe for you and your baby. They’re incredibly useful in keeping track of baby’s growth, determining their gender and highlighting any areas of concern that you may need to know about.

Early Pregnancy Scans

early pregnancy scan performed on lady's stomackThe early stages of your pregnancy are by far the hardest. Not only do many women have the worst symptoms of pregnancy in their first trimester, but often women don’t look pregnant yet and have no idea how their baby may be faring.

Early pregnancy scans are often referred to as viability scans, reassurance scans or dating scans. These provide real reassurance to expectant parents at the earliest stages of their pregnancy.

Often early pregnancy scans are recommended by doctors if there is a sign of concern (bleeding or other symptoms that may indicate an issue). An early pregnancy scan will look at the early development of your foetus and make sure that it is growing well and as expected.

A privately booked early pregnancy scan can also be used for expectant parents who just want to see what the foetus looks like, or get some extra reassurance that everything is going well.

If parents are unsure of the date of conception, an early pregnancy scan will date your pregnancy and determine your due date.

Growth Scans

growth scanAs you go along in your pregnancy, there is a growing focus on how your baby is growing. A growth scan is usually recommended around 28 and 36 weeks of your pregnancy and will be used to ensure your baby is growing as expected.

If your baby is slightly larger or smaller than expected, your healthcare professional will let you know, so that your obstetrician or consultant can determine the best time for your baby’s birth.

Often patients are recommended a growth scan should they be of a high risk of having a larger or smaller baby, such as having conditions like gestational diabetes or a history of having smaller babies.

4D Scans

expecting mother showing her baby's 4d pregnancy scan4D scans are becoming more and more popular. While a 2D ultrasound image is exciting to look at, a 4D scan shows you exactly how your baby looks in real-time, along with all their features and movements.

It’s known to be a bonding experience and expectant parents of all walks of life are opting for these more frequently, as a chance to ‘meet’ their little one for the first time.

Gender Scans

gender ultrasound scan reportOne of the growing trends of pregnancy is a gender reveal, but even before this became popular, it has always been a focus for parents on what the gender of their child may be.

Perhaps they want to decorate their nursery or prepare for their incoming baby with gender-specific clothing. Whatever the reason, gender scans are still the most popular privately booked pregnancy scan in the UK.

Also known as a sexing scan, a gender ultrasound scan lets you know if you are having a boy or a girl and, if it’s twins, whether you are having one of each or a set! Gender scans are usually recommended between 18 and 42 weeks of gestation, as before or after this, it can become difficult to see.

As gender reveals become more popular, doctors and ultrasound technicians are quite used to keeping the gender secret until the expectant parents are ready to reveal the secret!

Transvaginal Ultrasounds

transvaginal ultrasound machineNot all ultrasounds are used exclusively in pregnancy. Ultrasounds are also vitally important diagnostic tools.

Transvaginal Ultrasound Scans are internal scans of a woman’s reproductive system. While it may not be pleasant, it is pain-free and a safe procedure.

The scan involves inserting a small probe into the vagina to capture detailed images of your organs in your pelvic area, or in the early stages of pregnancy.

Transvaginal ultrasounds are generally used to investigate any abnormalities in your pelvic area

MSK Injections

MSK Injections
Another common non-pregnancy ultrasound is an MSK Joint Injection. This incredibly precise procedure involves using the ultrasound to guide an injection into your joint, specifically where the location is incredibly small or surrounded by sensitive structures.

MSK Injections are also known as Ultrasound Guided Joint Injections and are typically used to inject corticosteroids or a local anaesthetic directly into the joint.

Lumps & Bumps

ultrasound scan on a lump on the kneeWe all know how important it is to keep checking your body for changes. Lumps, bumps and even new dimples in areas where they shouldn’t be are areas of concern. While they most likely will turn out to be nothing of concern, they absolutely must be checked.

But how? Well, our Lumps & Bumps ultrasound will investigate any lump or bump in your soft tissue through soundwaves and can be useful in diagnosing the cause of these lumps and bumps.

Conclusion

Whatever your reason for wanting an ultrasound, you can be assured these are safe, radiation-free procedures.

It’s worthwhile to make sure that your ultrasound comes along with a full medical report that you can take back to your physician and, should you have any pregnancy scans, that they come along with images that you can take home with you.

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