Your pregnancy test was positive. Your heart is pounding and a million thoughts flood into your brain. Are you excited or panicked? Before making any decisions or plans, the smartest thing to do is to get an ultrasound for more information. An ultrasound will confirm the pregnancy by locating a heartbeat, determining an accurate gestational age and identifying if there is a baby in the uterus. Birth Choice offers this service FREE to clients who have a positive pregnancy test and meet medical criteria to receive an ultrasound. But first, let’s answer a few questions you may have…
What is an ultrasound?
Ultrasound is another name for sonogram. It is a method of seeing the internal parts of your body, or baby within your uterus, using sound waves. Ultrasound is like an ordinary sound except it has a higher pitch than your ear can hear. Ultrasound is sent into your body, and the sound waves that bounce back are converted into images or sounds, like your baby’s heartbeat, and are shown on the monitor. This image can provide the necessary information to lead you to your next step.
How is an ultrasound performed?
There are two main methods of performing a pelvic ultrasound; abdominal and vaginal. Abdominal ultrasound is performed by a specially trained person who is called a sonographer (at Birth Choice, a nurse) who applies clear water-based gel to the skin to help the scanner make good contact with your body. The scanner is pressed firmly against your skin and is swept over your lower abdomen. Vaginal ultrasound involves the insertion of the transducer (scanner) into the vagina. A protective cover is placed over the scanner, which is then lubricated with a small amount of gel. It is then inserted into the vagina by the sonographer or you may be asked to insert it as you would a tampon. At Birth Choice, the sonography pictures will be reviewed and read by a doctor. These procedures are safe for you and your baby —> https://bit.ly/2vvL43f
Why should I get an ultrasound before making any decisions?
There are many reasons to get an ultrasound. We will mention a few that are specific to determining viability of a pregnancy using a limited obstetric ultrasound, which is the type of ultrasound that Birth Choice performs. First, it will help confirm that you are truly pregnant. A home pregnancy test only determines that a pregnancy hormone called HcG is present in your urine but it doesn’t measure how much. (https://bit.ly/2MaxNqp). 30% of all positive pregnancy tests are not viable pregnancies. (https://bit.ly/2Bae5a6). Second, an ultrasound is done to detect if there is a beating heart… or not. And finally, an ultrasound determines if the baby is in the uterus where it should be or if it has implanted in the fallopian tube, indicating an ectopic pregnancy (also known as a tubal pregnancy that happens outside of the uterus). The most serious complication of an ectopic pregnancy is rupture which leads to intra-abdominal hemorrhage —> https://bit.ly/2OU23EA.
These 3 facts will confirm whether you are actually pregnant, what stage of pregnancy you are in and whether you need additional care by a doctor in the case that the sonographer does not see what is expected. As you can see, this information is valuable in determining next steps for your pregnancy.
If you think you might be pregnant, Birth Choice can provide information and services to aid you in your pregnancy decisions. Our state-of-the-art Women’s Mobile Clinic was licensed by the State of California and is operated under the direction of a Medical Director with services performed by highly trained RNs. This clinic operates in different locations throughout the week, so please visit www.womensmobileclinic.com to find more information. We hope to see you soon!