Preparing for your scan
For your ultrasound you will need to wear something comfortable keeping in mind you will need to remove the lower part your clothing.
Children under 6 are not permitted in the ultrasound rooms due to medico-legal reasons. However, if you need to bring your children, please be sure that you have an adult supervising them in our waiting room.
It is very important that you bring your referral from your Specialist/GP with you on the day of your scan.
Select the scan you are having below for specific additional information for your scan preparation.
3D AND 4D SCANS
The four dimensions are length, breadth, width and time. A three dimensional (3D) ultrasound involves a static analysis of a picture in length, breadth and width. Using the fourth dimension (4D) one can get instant pictures in time of a 3D image - a 3D picture is a static image and a 4D picture is a 3D picture which is updated regularly in time, so that it seems like a moving 3D image ie as we see at the movies.
Both 3D and 4D scans are performed at our Wesley and Sunnybank rooms. Patients are given a CD with images of their baby to take with them. The quality of these images is reliant to the mother's BMI, fetal position, movement, previous abdominal surgery and amount of amniotic fluid.
3D and 4D ultrasound both utilise sound waves to look inside the body just the same as ordinary 2D ultrasound. Since its inception in 1956 there has been no evidence to show that there are health risks associated with ultrasound. It does not matter whether we use 2D, 3D or 4D ultrasound. The scans are useful in obstetrics, where there is a lesion that may be difficult to explain to the patient. In most instances the anomaly can be diagnosed with 2D ultrasound. However the 3D may give better definition of the malformation such as cleft lip, abnormal position of the hands and feet or extent of the spinal defect in spina bifida.
The training of sonographers (ultrasound technicians) is of a very high standard in Australia. The education process and the continuing evaluation of sonographers means that patients in Australia are now receiving world class management.
The technology we have today is so far advanced in terms of what was available even five to ten years ago. This enables us to get as good a view as is possible of a fetus. Sensible management protocols can then be implemented, if an anomaly is found. This may not be a structural anomaly, it may be something as simple as reduced fetal growth. The ability to see a baby clearly on ultrasound, even with the technology that we have, can vary with the lie and age of the fetus. As well, maternal BMI, previous abdominal surgery and reduced amniotic fluid can all influence the quality of the ultrasound images. Hence it is possible, but rare, to misdiagnose the gender and miss structural abnormalities.
Most patients love to be able to see a picture of their baby or their baby’s face in either 3D or 4D. Pregnant women and their families say seeing the 3D/4D images made the baby very “real” to them – they felt a connection with their baby which began with the first view.