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No ultrasound?

post #1 of 35
Thread Starter 
This is my 3rd pregnancy. I am 16 weeks. I delivered my first 2 at home with a midwife. With the first two I was able to get medicaid and although it didn't pay for midwife it did pay for an ultrasound and labs.
This time around we have not been eligible for medicaid and I cannot get any insurance yet through ACA due to some glitches I won't go into here.

So here we are no insurance at all and barely paying the midwife who has been SO GRACIOUS as to accept payments from us extending after the birth if need be.

An ultrasound is $500. There is no way we can afford that. But it scares me a little not to have that reassuring "yup, everything looks good" before I deliver at home. I know many forego US all together. ..and I'm just looking for some reassuring words that I will be ok without it. I'm 36 and it's been 9 years since my last birth. This pregnancy has been so much harder than my last 2 and I am honestly just very afraid. I believe in birth and I loved my home births...This baby was not planned for and I feel very old (even though I know I'm not) and scared.
post #2 of 35
Hugs mama! Could you arrange a possible payment plan with an OB office or radiology office to get your 20 week scan ? You have probably already thought of that tho....
post #3 of 35
That's terrible! You should definitely not give up on trying to get an ultrasound. Have you looked at sites like crowdrise.com? Strangers may be willing to help you pay for the prenatal care that you need and deserve.
post #4 of 35
Thread Starter 

My midwife is pretty deep in the community here and she knows of no one willing to do payments on lab work or imaging. There is even a midwifery birth center here that is pretty large and they have an US machine, she used to work for them, but even they wont take payments. I was shocked at the $500 price tag.  I mean I know medical things are expensive...I just thought since the machine is a one time cost and there are no injections or drugs etc etc, an ultrasound would be more reasonable. :/


I have never heard of crowdrise...I HATE being a charity case...I don't feel as bad about medicaid because I have worked since I was 14 and paid taxes willingly my whole life. But asking strangers for money? Yikes....could I sleep at night? Hmm.....


Thank you mamas for the suggestions though.

post #5 of 35
Originally Posted by middlemamma View Post


I have never heard of crowdrise...I HATE being a charity case...I don't feel as bad about medicaid because I have worked since I was 14 and paid taxes willingly my whole life. But asking strangers for money? Yikes....could I sleep at night? Hmm.....


Could you sleep at night if you didn't get an ultrasound, had a home birth, and your baby suffered from a complication that could have been detected and prevented?  Swallow your pride and ask for help.  There's no shame in doing everything in your power to make sure that your child is safe. 

post #6 of 35

One more point: What does your midwife say about going forward with a homebirth without having had an ultrasound?  I would be pretty concerned about this person's judgement if they were willing to go into this situation without knowing what's going on with your baby. 

post #7 of 35
Thread Starter 
I have different views than you do regarding the necessity of a US. The majority of midwives do not REQUIRE ultrasound. One is usually optional as it was with a different midwife 13 and 9 years ago.

As far as your previous question...how would I sleep at night if the baby had preventable problem that could have been detected with a US? Well I imagine it would suck pretty bad to beg strangers for money, have the US and discover a problem that I STILL wouldn't have the insurance to fix. Where would that get me? I guess I will do what many do and do the best I can. If a problem were detected I wouldn't terminate and there is no coverage to help one...so that pretty much answers my questions doesn't it? Thank you so much for you condescending attitude it helped tremendously. Have a great night.
post #8 of 35

Fair enough.  I didn't mean to be condescending.


Edit: Just to clarify.  An ultrasound can detect risk factors that might make you a poor candidate for homebirth/alert you to possible complications that you might be at an increased risk for. 

post #9 of 35

I spoke too soon.  I had been assuming that the ultrasound rate was a lot higher than it actually is.  In fact, only about 70% of women who are pregnant get even one ultrasound and many experts advise against them when there isn't a specific reason.  So you shouldn't feel guilty about this!  Sorry!

post #10 of 35
I not sure where you're at but a lot of cities have recreational ultrasounds for less than 100 $. they might not be fully diagnostic but they can tell you if everything's intact and the organs are where they should be.
post #11 of 35
Thread Starter 
Yes that's true. Sadly not where I am. I have called about 15 places so far. They will do early term, 1st trimester US many places, even for free. No one will do anything later in pregnancy. I have 3 or 4 more to call tomorrow, but so far no one has been optimistic. I am in the panhandle of Idaho. Near Spokane. I have called many places in Spokane and Idaho in my search. Even the Planned Parenthood will not do one, nor the health department, or the sliding scale low income Dirne clinic. I will definitely keep trying but so far every call has been a dead end.
post #12 of 35
I found www.sweetpeaimagery.com they don't require a previous ultrasound, so that might be a place worth looking into
post #13 of 35
Thread Starter 
That is very interesting. It seems like more of a photo session and not for any thing more than gender reveal? Is that the impression you get?
post #14 of 35
They are, but every place I've talked to (I going to one for my us) do a very small diagnostic scan, it won't find obscure things but it will find missing limbs, extra limbs, tumors/growths, and obvious heart, spine and brain problems. That's really all I'm looking for, so unless they find something very wrong it wouldn't change any plans I've made.
post #15 of 35
Thread Starter 
I will look into this. Thank you. It's a little glimmer of hope anyway. smile.gif
post #16 of 35
Dear middlemamma—
I just read this thread again before going to sleep, and I cringed.  I was surprised when you accused me of being condescending before, but you were absolutely right.  I need to apologize for the way I approached this one.
We obviously have different views on charity.  I’ve always been taught that you should give what you can when times are good and graciously accept help when times are bad.  I still think that way.  What I forgot, though, is that it’s not the only acceptable opinion and that there’s a lot to admire in your determination not to live on handouts from others.  
You’re obviously a great mom who is totally committed to your family and this baby.  You’re obviously working your butt off to make ends meet while dealing with insurance problems and an unexpected pregnancy.  The absolute last thing you need or deserve is some stranger on the internet suggesting that you’re doing a bad job. I’m ashamed that that stranger was me.
I hope that you will accept my apology.  
post #17 of 35
Thread Starter 
Appalled20....don't worry at all. I was pretty emotional and upset yesterday as well. I was very snappy. And I'm sorry too. The Internet is a hard place To communicate without trouble as well. I accept and I appreciate your willingness to apologize. A lot of people wouldn't have.

I believe in charity...I guess I figure if my cable TV is turned on and I have Internet I'm not eligible to ask for it yet though, there are things I need to give up to make this happen before I ask for help. Try my best before I ask for that help so to speak. smile.gif

I'm still not sure what we are going to do but I am gonna keep trying. smile.gif
post #18 of 35

Hi Middlemamma,

It is true that many midwives do not routinely require u/s.  Despite the reassuring feeling some of us get seeing that all looks okay at a 20 wk scan (I felt this way with my last pregnancy), the evidence does not seem to show that is makes a difference in outcomes for low risk women. Here are some articles:





Granted, these studies were not examining home births, so I would make sure that my midwife was experienced and capable of doing a thorough newborn exam.  Good luck!


post #19 of 35

I didn't have any ultrasounds in my 5 pregnancies and everything was ok. I did have a few concerns in my last pregnancy and wanted an u/s, but was in a very abusive relationship with a man who was very anti doctors/medical care. Everything was ok and my fears were unfounded, fortunately. But I do feel that you should follow your gut. If you feel you need an u/s, then get one and if you don't, then don't. I let fear play a huge role in many of my birthing and pregnancy decisions and I regret that.

post #20 of 35
Thread Starter 
Thank you Olive and Josie. I saw my midwife today. I think I was able to communicate how I have been feeling for the first time even for myself. I have a lot of stuff floating around in that head of mine. I have been feeling very pressured to preform. Like if anything goes wrong with this birth everything we have worked so hard for financially will be down the tubes and it will be all my fault. Hubby and I lost everything when the market crashed. I was in real estate and he was in construction. We have spent the last 5 years rebuilding and digging and clawing our way out of a very large hole. Only in the last 6 months have we started to feel like we could breathe and I end up pregnant. After 9 years of successful family planning, something goes wrong.

Facing financial ruin again, because of medical bills, is terrifying for me. So I feel this enormous pressure to have the perfect birth again. #1 & 2 were perfect...I think to myself, is my luck gonna run out?

I guess I was hoping the US would say to me, no worries!...green light, all systems go, or something like that...but I know it doesn't work like that.

My mother is also living close by for the first time since I left home at 18. And she is very against my birth choices. I feel like she would just love for me to end up in the hospital so she could say I told you so. So it's just more pressure. I have always had a very strained relationship with her because my father was so abusive...but now for the first time I'm trying to build something with her..so just telling her to buzz off isn't really an option. I need to handle this gently. It was easy when she was 100's of miles away and showed up after baby came. It's gonna be a little trickier this time....

Josie...I am sorry for your abusive relationship and your regrets. I wish you healing and peace.

One good thing the midwife said was that she may have found a solution for the US dilema. smile.gif something affordable. We shall see. I'm hopeful.
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