Ultrasound imaging, also called ultrasound scanning or sonography, is a method of obtaining images of internal organs by sending high-frequency sound waves into the body. The sound wave echoes which have a frequency higher than people can hear are recorded and displayed as a real-time visual image. No ionizing radiation (x-ray) is involved in ultrasound imaging. Obstetric ultrasound refers to the specialized use of sound waves to visualize and thus determine the condition of a pregnant woman and her embryo or foetus.
Obstetric Ultrasound Preparation
These instructions are IMPORTANT. Please follow them.
- You should wear a loose fitting two-piece outfit for the examination. Only the lower abdominal area needs to be exposed during this procedure; consequently, a two-piece outfit will prevent you from having to readjust or remove all of your clothing.
- If an ultrasound is required early in your pregnancy, you will be required to have a full bladder for the procedure. Air interferes with sound waves, so if your bladder is distended, the air-filled bowel is pushed out of the way and an image of the uterus and embryo or fetus is obtained. A full bladder is not necessary in most cases after the first 3 months of pregnancy. The radiologist or sonographer may elect to examine an early pregnancy or the cervix by means of transvaginal ultrasound. This requires an empty urinary bladder.
- You will be provided additional instructions when you make your appointment.