There are many reasons you would have an ultrasound performed if you’re pregnant. The most common is to verify the gestational age of the fetus which is especially helpful if you tend to have irregular periods, spotting or aren’t sure of when your last menstrual period was. Because few women know the exact day they ovulated or conceived, an ultrasound done in the first trimester of pregnancy has been shown to the be the most accurate way to date a pregnancy.
At Mosaic, the primary reason we perform an ultrasound it to confirm that you have a viable intrauterine pregnancy. The ultrasound can reveal if the fetus is growing outside of the uterus, causing an ectopic pregnancy which can be life-threatening for the mother and the unborn child. Many women are not aware that a pregnancy may grow inside the fallopian tube or attached to her cervix, abdominal cavity or the ovary where a baby cannot survive. A tubal pregnancy is a medical emergency.
If you’re considering a termination of your pregnancy, an ultrasound is strongly suggested for your health and safety. Not only will the gestation of your fetus determine the type of abortion procedure you are eligible for, but for example, if your pregnancy is ectopic, and the fetus is growing in your fallopian tubes, a surgical abortion may not end your pregnancy. The fetus could continue to grow, possibly causing your fallopian tube to burst, which might put your life at risk. Too, 20% of pregnancies end in miscarriage, which the ultrasound may also reveal.