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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm scheduled to have my first OB visit on 12/20, which will be 8w2d for me. We really want to hear a heartbeat that day, so that we feel more comfortable telling family over Christmas (we're planning on traveling on the 20th and telling my parents on the 21st--it's the only chance b/c of DH's work schedule). The OB's receptionist who made the appointment said that the OB doesn't do ultrasounds until 12 weeks or so unless you're high risk (I'm not), and they don't do it in the office, anyway--you go to their u/s center or something. I was pushing to try to get an u/s on the 20th or earlier, until the receptionist said that the OB checks for heartbeats at every appointment, but warned me that 8w might be too early to hear. So now I'm wondering what she uses to check for heartbeats, if not u/s, and when you could expect to hear anything with whatever it is that she uses. Any ideas? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/shrug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="shrug"><br><br>
Backstory: this OB came with high recommendations from a (doctor) colleague of my husband's--she delivered all 4 of their kids, and his wife loves her. Apparently she's not taking any new patients except by referral, and I only squeaked in by saying that a doctor told me to call her, which is true. So, I think she's good, and I don't want to make a bunch of calls there or make too many waves before I see her the first time, for fear that she'll decide my "referral" wasn't official enough.
 

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The other option for finding a heartbeat would be the doppler. I was told the doppler cannot find a HB until 9-12 weeks. Then it depends on how thin you are, the tilt of the uterus, and where the baby is located. I wouldn't worry if they can't find a heartbeat without an u/s.
 

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My midwife usually hears a heartbeat with a fetoscope around 18-22 weeks.
 

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An ObGyn will use a doppler most likely and I wouldn't count on hearing it before 12 weeks. My first appt last time was around 11 and we couldn't hear it with it. It's hit or miss, I know lots of Dr's don't even like to try before 12 weeks because when they can't find it, it freaks out the mom even if they are told ahead of time that it probably won't be detected yet.
 

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The doctor will use a doppler. If you will get worried if they don't find the hb--- then don't do it that early. With my last pg they first tried to find a hb at 12 1/2 weeks and couldn't find it. Of course, I was totally freaked out. Luckily, they had an u/s machine in the office and we saw the healthy baby with a nice hb right there that day, otherwise I would have been a total mess waiting for a month for my next appointment to hear it again.<br><br>
This time I won't let anyone look for the hb until at least 14 week, maybe longer.<br><br>
Also, don't worry about upsetting your doctor with questions and phone calls. She is working for you. And even though you got a good recommendation she might not be the one for you.<br><br>
Lorette
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hmm, thanks guys. It sounds like it's probably doppler, then, and 8w may just be too soon for that to do any good. I guess I don't know what to do. I'm pretty worried about m/c, even though I don't think I have any particular reason to be. I'm 27, healthy, never had any kind of problems, etc. But they say that 20% of known pregnancies end in m/c, and that's a pretty high number. I also read that if you get a good heartbeat, the risk of m/c goes down by 95%, so that would make me feel so much better. I know my parents, my dad especially, will be soooooo overwhelmingly excited about me being pg, and I don't want to get their hopes up in case anything goes wrong. Maybe Dec. 21st is really too early to say anything, but otherwise I don't know when we'll get to see them in person again, and I know they would be disappointed if I didn't tell them in person.<br><br>
Is it unreasonable to want an u/s at 8 weeks? I mean, what if there was something wrong, like an ectopic pregnancy--wouldn't it be better to know asap? Why do they wait so long? I've been having slight pangs today, and a couple days ago, about 1 inch above my pubic bone and to the right of center. It doesn't hurt much, but I don't think it's psychosomatic. I don't know--maybe it's normal. Should I push for an u/s? Or at least an earlier appointment so that the OB can make sure things are progressing normally and tell me what to expect?
 

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The main reason they dont' do it much earlier than 8, or even 10 to 12 weeks is there is so little they can do for you if something is wrong. The only possible problem I can think of that you would need to go in that early for is an ectopic, and honestly, it's rare enough that they don't find it worth it to scan every woman for it. I think you will have more definite symptoms than the ones you describe if that were the case for you.<br><br>
Also, please remember that ultrasounds are not risk-free, especially the high-resolution ones generally done in the first trimester. There have been no long term studies confirming the safety of ultrasound at all. We've just gone along assuming everything is fine, but the truth is, no one knows that for sure.<br><br>
I understand not wanting to get people's hopes up, but what if, on the off chance you miscarrry, and your parents already know. That would be more people to grieve with you and support you through it than just you and your husband. They are your parents, and they love and care about you and would want to share your ups and downs. Just a thought, for what it's worth.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>hyz</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9922475"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Is it unreasonable to want an u/s at 8 weeks?</div>
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<b><span>hyz</span></b> - I think that is a personal decision. My OB's typically does the first u/s at 9-10 weeks. Because I m/ced in September he did my first u/s this time at 7 weeks to make sure there was a strong heartbeat. Thankfully the heart was beating strong. He will do another u/s at 10 weeks just to be safe because of my last m/c.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>quarteralien</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9923556"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I understand not wanting to get people's hopes up, but what if, on the off chance you miscarrry, and your parents already know. That would be more people to grieve with you and support you through it than just you and your husband. They are your parents, and they love and care about you and would want to share your ups and downs. Just a thought, for what it's worth.</div>
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I fully agree. I needed my parents' and in-laws' support when I m/ced. I can't imagine having a m/c and not telling my parents.
 

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Regular ultrasound safety/unsafety aside, I thought that vaginal ultrasounds increased the risk of miscarriage by a small amount?<br>
And doppler sound waves are higher/stronger than regular ultrasound, so that's another concern if used frequently.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Sunshine4004</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9923593"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I fully agree. I needed my parents' and in-laws' support when I m/ced. I can't imagine having a m/c and not telling my parents.</div>
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I didn't tell my parents about the early miscarriage I had over the summer. It was such a surreal experience I just didn't talk about it much. I wish I had.
 

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I had an u/s at 8w2d because I insisted on one. I've had two m/c that went for longer and it turns out that there was no hb, so I hadtohadtohadto know that this one was viable or I was gonna lose my mind.<br><br>
We saw the hb just fine on u/s at 8w.<br>
I went in for a CNM appt at 11w2d and heard the hb w/ doppler no problem at all.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>veganf</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9923598"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Regular ultrasound safety/unsafety aside, I thought that vaginal ultrasounds increased the risk of miscarriage by a small amount?<br>
And doppler sound waves are higher/stronger than regular ultrasound, so that's another concern if used frequently.</div>
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I've never heard that the vaginal u/s risk has been documented. It seems like it would be a case of confounding variables. Did the u/s cause it, or was it the fact that usually the women who have them are high risk anyway?<br><br>
And I agree about the doppler. Higher frequency and it is used at every visit usually.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks, guys. I'm not usually a worrier. Actually, I think I'm so worried about this because I'm <b>usually</b> a person who expects the best, and gets all excited and obsessed over things, and DH and I have been impatiently waiting 6+ years for the "right time" to ttc--this is something we've really been wanting. So I guess it's just hard knowing that there are huge aspects of it that are out of my control, and that despite our best efforts and highest hopes, there's a fair chance that it will end sadly. I just want some reassurance.<br><br>
I'd heard about the risks of vaginal u/s, too, and wouldn't want to get one of those unless it seemed medically necessary. I should probably research more about any potential ill effects of traditional u/s and doppler--I really don't know anything about it--it just seemed so normal to me that I've never thought of it as potentially risky.<br><br>
As for my parents--I guess I will still plan to tell them, no matter what happens on the 20th. I don't know how comforting they'd be if I m/c'd, but then again I'd probably feel weird having kept it from them. We don't keep secrets from each other, but we've never been touchy-feely, either. For instance, when my dear sweet old dog was dying in May, I didn't have any problem sobbing on DH's shoulder for days, but I tried to keep a stiff upper lip with my parents, and not talk about it too much, so I wouldn't break down. I love them, but they're just not all that comforting. They're great at sharing joy, though. I thought I'd be bursting to tell them about being pg the second I saw the BFP, but I've just been feeling surprisingly private/protective about it. I guess I'll just tell them at Christmas, but warn them not to get their hopes up, because it's still a fragile stage, and you never know. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment">
 

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<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>hyz</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9924213"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Thanks, guys. I'm not usually a worrier. Actually, I think I'm so worried about this because I'm <b>usually</b> a person who expects the best, and gets all excited and obsessed over things, and DH and I have been impatiently waiting 6+ years for the "right time" to ttc--this is something we've really been wanting. So I guess it's just hard knowing that there are huge aspects of it that are out of my control, and that despite our best efforts and highest hopes, there's a fair chance that it will end sadly. I just want some reassurance.</div>
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One of the big things I learned from my first pregnancy (which went wonderfully!) was that there was never a point where I stopped worrying. Motherhood is unique in my experience here. I don't do this with anything else.<br><br>
I worried during the first trimester because I was afraid of miscarriage. I worried because I hadn't seen the heartbeat yet. I worried after I saw the heartbeat because there was no way for me to know if it stopped because I wasn't looking at it all the time!<br><br>
Then we got out of the first trimester. Home safe, right! Nope. I worried because I didn't feel movement yet. I worried because I felt movement, but then I didn't feel it RIGHT THIS SECOND. I worried because we were around the time when an incompetent cervix would be a problem. I worried because there was nothing we could do if something went wrong.<br><br>
Then we reached the point where the baby could maybe surivive outside the womb. And then I worried even more- what if I MISSED the signs that something was wrong? Earlier there wasn't anything I could do, but if something happened now and I didn't catch it it would be my fault. I worried more about movement. I worried about preterm labor.<br><br>
The baby kept me up all night once turning from breech to vertex. Then he stopped moving and went to sleep. I worried that he'd compressed his cord and died. I worried that the dampness I felt was a fluid leak.<br><br>
Then the baby was born! Hurrah! No more worry!<br><br>
Oops. Then I worried about him forgetting how to breathe. Then we passed the sids risk age...and he started solid foods. So I worried about him choking. And so on.<br><br>
I have since come to the conclusion that I'm going to worry NO MATTER WHAT... so there's no point in doing things to try to elminate that worry. Reasonable precautions, yes. Relying on a test or gadget or technique to make me feel better...not gonna work. Not for more than a week or so, anyway.<br><br><br>
I'm not entirely sure what the point of that long ramble was, but...uh....there ya go?
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/yeahthat.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="yeah that">: I so relate to that post.
 

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<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>prothyraia</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9926798"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">One of the big things I learned from my first pregnancy (which went wonderfully!) was that there was never a point where I stopped worrying. Motherhood is unique in my experience here. I don't do this with anything else.<br><br>
I worried during the first trimester because I was afraid of miscarriage. I worried because I hadn't seen the heartbeat yet. I worried after I saw the heartbeat because there was no way for me to know if it stopped because I wasn't looking at it all the time!<br><br>
Then we got out of the first trimester. Home safe, right! Nope. I worried because I didn't feel movement yet. I worried because I felt movement, but then I didn't feel it RIGHT THIS SECOND. I worried because we were around the time when an incompetent cervix would be a problem. I worried because there was nothing we could do if something went wrong.<br><br>
Then we reached the point where the baby could maybe surivive outside the womb. And then I worried even more- what if I MISSED the signs that something was wrong? Earlier there wasn't anything I could do, but if something happened now and I didn't catch it it would be my fault. I worried more about movement. I worried about preterm labor.<br><br>
The baby kept me up all night once turning from breech to vertex. Then he stopped moving and went to sleep. I worried that he'd compressed his cord and died. I worried that the dampness I felt was a fluid leak.<br><br>
Then the baby was born! Hurrah! No more worry!<br><br>
Oops. Then I worried about him forgetting how to breathe. Then we passed the sids risk age...and he started solid foods. So I worried about him choking. And so on.<br><br>
I have since come to the conclusion that I'm going to worry NO MATTER WHAT... so there's no point in doing things to try to elminate that worry. Reasonable precautions, yes. Relying on a test or gadget or technique to make me feel better...not gonna work. Not for more than a week or so, anyway.<br><br><br>
I'm not entirely sure what the point of that long ramble was, but...uh....there ya go?</div>
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I could have written this myself! So true, I totally agree. I was so worried my whole pregnancy only to be MUCH more worried about SIDS. Now, I worry about car accidents. I worry about projectiles in the car hitting him in the head, to the point here I've thought about getting him a helmet to wear in the car. I worry about him climbing over the baby gate and falling down the stairs. I have already starting worrying about him driving - in 15 years. Seriously, I will worry about him endlessly until I'm in my grave. That's being a mom.
 

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Hmm, maybe we aren't painting a very happy picture of motherhood? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment"><br>
I still have no regrets that I did it. Obviously I did it again...and again...<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">
 

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<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>quarteralien</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9923556"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Also, please remember that ultrasounds are not risk-free, especially the high-resolution ones generally done in the first trimester. There have been no long term studies confirming the safety of ultrasound at all. We've just gone along assuming everything is fine, but the truth is, no one knows that for sure.</div>
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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/yeahthat.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="yeah that">: definitely not something to do lightly, unless there are some real valid concerns or reasons for needing to see the baby.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>prothyraia</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9926798"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I have since come to the conclusion that I'm going to worry NO MATTER WHAT... so there's no point in doing things to try to elminate that worry. Reasonable precautions, yes. Relying on a test or gadget or technique to make me feel better...not gonna work. Not for more than a week or so, anyway.</div>
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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> SO TRUE!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Thanks for the reality check, guys. It <i>had</i> occurred to me that this was just practice for the rest of my life as a mom (god willing)--I'm not sure how comforting that is, but I'm sure you're right. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/shy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="innocent"> All this worrying is just so foreign to me--but I have to learn how to cope, because I don't want to be one of those moms whose kids are wrapped in bubble wrap and strapped to the couch so they can never get hurt. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> And, um, the helmet story is funny. Does anyone actually do that? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/duck.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Duck">: I'm feeling better now, so thanks. Part of my problem is that my job mostly involves sitting alone with my thoughts in an office all day--too much time to feel every little pang, and think about every possibility, and research it on the internet. I do better when I can take my mind off of it. In that spirit, I'm going to get back to my knitting....<br><br>
Thanks! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment">
 
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