Safety of multiple early ultrasounds? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 10 Old 04-12-2012, 03:48 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I am looking for a little reassurance here, since with my two boys I never had an ultrasound (both were homebirths).  I am currently 8 weeks pregnant and have already had 3 ultrasounds due to bleeding/spotting in this pregnancy and an initially slow fetal heart rate (was 93 at 7 wks, then 104, and 163 today at 8 wks - yay!).  I have a history of recurrent miscarriages, which is another reason they are following me so closely.  I guess I am feeling a little freaked out by the number of ultrasounds and looking for reassurance from mamas who have been there and ended up with perfectly healthy little ones. 

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#2 of 10 Old 04-12-2012, 05:20 PM
 
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I had a 3 (6, 9, 12 weeks) USs with my last pregnancy and he was fine.

Usually they keep is short and sweet and just check in on what the problem is or whatever they are looking for.

I had a later missed MC the pregnancy before and the stress and anxiety I felt I thought was more harmful than the US.

 

As far as I'm concerned, the radiation from the laptop I work from all day, cumulatively, is probably far riskier than 10-15 minutes of combined US in the first trimester IMO.


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#3 of 10 Old 04-12-2012, 06:04 PM
 
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I researched it and concluded that there was no reason to think that ultrasounds caused any harm at all. However, since "you never know" it's better not to have them done for no reason. I do believe that reducing the mother's stress is a legitimate reason to do a quick ultrasound. If there is any evidence that they can cause harm, I would be interested in hearing it.

 

I had some problems early in my pregnancy so I have gotten a lot of ultrasounds. I had two before 8 weeks and have had them every one to two weeks since then. My baby has not been born yet, but at 25 weeks everything is looking good.

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#4 of 10 Old 04-12-2012, 06:12 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I guess part of my concern is that two of mine were not quick scans - the first one in the emergency room was probably 15 minutes long and the one I had today was 20 minutes.  I have nodules on my ovaries that they are concerned about, so they were looking at those, too.  I am really trying not to worry, what's done is done, but the frequency and length of the ultrasounds in such a short time period and early stage of development does concern me. 

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#5 of 10 Old 04-13-2012, 08:48 AM
 
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Back when I was pregnant w #2 I believe I read that length of ultrasound imaging is not as concerning as length of doppler use because with ultrasound the sound wave is sent once, but with doppler it is sent multiple times.  4D ultrasound can carry risk like that of doppler, though....

 

At any rate, over the past 30 some odd years of routine ultrasound use there has been no indication of adverse effect (at least when used judiciously), so I would not worry at all.  Peace of mind is a valid reason for US as is checking on any bleeds and embryonic growth.


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#6 of 10 Old 04-13-2012, 10:43 AM
 
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Ask yourself or your Dr. what they are looking for and what the solutions would be to the problem. Most of the time there is nothing that can be done until after birth. I think ultrasounds are WAY over used and can potentially do harm. Ask any one who works with them in another professional setting (therapy, rehabilitation) and you will hear how they use them to alter cells, increase blood circulation, etc. My main reason for not getting one ever again was with my first daughter she held her arms so strongly over her face. After talking to others I found that most babies do this. I don't think it's coincidental ...I think it is really bothering them and they are trying to shelter themselves. 

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#7 of 10 Old 04-13-2012, 02:05 PM
 
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There have been no studies to prove they are safe or dangerous.

 

Saying that, we choose not to get them done unless there is a pressing concern that an US would address.

 

Like the PP we try and decide on what would we do with the information presented to us.  Is there anything we could do?

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#8 of 10 Old 04-13-2012, 10:09 PM
 
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I think maternal stress is more harmful than u/s, so if you needed them, and would've been stressed without them, then they were beneficial, IMO. :) Just my personal opinion though. I try not to limit them, too.

Quote:

Originally Posted by suzywan View Post

Back when I was pregnant w #2 I believe I read that length of ultrasound imaging is not as concerning as length of doppler use because with ultrasound the sound wave is sent once, but with doppler it is sent multiple times.  4D ultrasound can carry risk like that of doppler, though....



Not exactly. Doppler uses continuous sound waves, whereas a regular ultrasound uses pulsed waves, so overall there is more exposure via Doppler than u/s, if both are used for the same amount of time.

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#9 of 10 Old 04-14-2012, 11:06 AM
 
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That's it - thanks for the clarification!


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#10 of 10 Old 04-15-2012, 11:01 AM
 
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I don't think there is anything wrong with Ultrasounds.  It can be lifesaving medicine for Mom and Baby - if used correctly.  If I were bleeding, need to follow things for one reason or another, I wouldn't think twice about getting one.

 

I was diagnosed with a complete previa at 13 weeks 5 days . I got an ultrasound to see what was going on.  They wanted to do one every four weeks, but I opted not to do that - just so long as I didn't bleed again - which I didn't.  I went in to do one more at 24 weeks and saw the previa corrected itself.  2 and done.  They want me to do another, but I made the choice not to.  The problem with peeps on this issue, is that the findings are particularly unreliable - especially concerning baby size and age.  I think it gives doctors ammunition to convince/guilt mothers into doing things that are bad for the Mother's and Baby's body, mind and spirit.  In my opinion, Ultrasound is overused and abused - but that's a problem of mortal man.

 

When bleeding is concerned, or another problem with the pregnancy, Ultrasounds are a great tool to see what's going on.  If doctors would use them in this way - we wouldn't even be talking about this issue.


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