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Obstetrical Ultrasound

Obstetrical ultrasound is a specialized exam using sound waves to visualize and determine the condition of a pregnant woman and the embryo or fetus. The procedure also monitors the health of the mother's uterus, ovaries, and the blood flow through the umbilical cord to the placenta.

Obstetric Ultrasound Preparation

  • 2 hours before your appointment time, start drinking 1 Liters (4 Cups) of clear fluid. Finish drinking the water 1 hour before your appointment time.
  • DO NOT VOID, a full bladder is necessary for examination
  • Please eat breakfast and lunch

Common Uses of the Procedure

  • Establish the presence of a living embryo/fetus
  • Estimate the age of the pregnancy
  • Diagnose congenital abnormalities of the fetus
  • Evaluate the position of the fetus
  • Evaluate the position of the placenta
  • Determine if there are multiple pregnancies
  • Determine the amount of amniotic fluid around the baby
  • Check for opening or shortening of the cervix
  • Assess fetal growth
  • Assess fetal well-being


  • Ultrasound is the preferred imaging modality for the diagnosis and monitoring of pregnant women and their unborn babies.
  • Occasionally, an ultrasound exam may be temporarily uncomfortable, but it should not be painful.
  • Ultrasound imaging is extremely safe and does not use radiation.
  • Ultrasound scanning gives a clear picture of soft tissues that do not show up well on x-ray images.
  • Ultrasound has been used to evaluate pregnancy for nearly four decades and there has been no evidence of harm to the patient, embryo or fetus.
  • Nevertheless, ultrasound should be performed only when medically indicated.
  • Ultrasound allows the doctor to see inside the uterus and provides much information about the pregnancy.