Usually, all pregnant women get at least two ultrasounds throughout their pregnancy. A dating scan is done in the first trimester to determine the due date and gestational age of the baby. An anatomy scan is then done around 20 weeks. This thorough scan looks for any deformities and possible developmental problems with the baby.
A third one may be done in the ninth month to see how big the baby is and to guess when the baby may arrive. Of course, women with high-risk pregnancies and those with multiples receive more than the normal number of ultrasounds to keep an eye on development. Doctors are on board with ultrasounds and there has been no scientific evidence that they're harmful.
A Statnews article highlighted the story of a woman who is against ultrasounds and why. She decided to opt-out after doing some research and listening to other women's stories. This woman searched for proof that ultrasounds were harmful but couldn't find any evidence that they were safe. She then heard that a friend of a friend had been told during her pregnancy that her baby had a possible limb deformation. That woman spent her whole pregnancy worrying only to have her baby born perfectly fine.
The woman in the story ultimately decided she would prefer to not possibly spend her whole pregnancy anxious or possibly seeing something wrong on an ultrasound. She deemed the risk of getting an ultrasound riskier than possibly missing any abnormality in a scan. She wanted to approach her pregnancy naturally and trust her body.
Ultrasounds use sound waves to see the baby in the uterus. They can tell the sex and see if a baby has a number of issues including a cleft lip, heart defect, underdeveloped kidneys, Down syndrome, or many other abnormalities that occur yearly. They're certainly rare, but it happens.
Ultrasounds are used as a diagnostic tool, but not an official diagnosis. Nothing is ever known for sure until after the baby is born. Many clinics and offices require women to get at least one ultrasound so they know what they're dealing with. Refusing ultrasounds is a new trend on the rise and women who refuse need to find a provider who is the same page.
There is no current data on the number of women who have been refusing. But doctors argue that most pregnant women get one or two ultrasounds and there have been no reported adverse effects.
Have you ever taken any thought about ultrasounds? Did you eve think to refuse them? Or did you? Share your thoughts in the comments below!