Two different types of ultrasound are used during pregnancy: transvaginal and abdominal.
Both types of prenatal ultrasound will give you essential details about your pregnancy, but the way each works is slightly different.
How Does Ultrasound Work?
Ultrasound uses sound waves to create an image of your internal structures. During pregnancy, ultrasound focuses on your uterus.
During both a transvaginal and abdominal ultrasound, you will be able to see your pregnancy on the ultrasound screen.
Transvaginal ultrasound is used during early pregnancy because it offers the clearest image.
During a transvaginal ultrasound, the transducer (the wand-like part of the ultrasound machine) is gently inserted into the vagina. You might feel slight pressure as the sonographer (the trained professional performing the ultrasound) moves the transducer around to gather details about your pregnancy.
Abdominal ultrasound is used later in pregnancy.
During an abdominal ultrasound, the sonographer will put a jellylike substance on your abdomen and move the transducer around the area.
What Information Can a Prenatal Ultrasound Tell Me?
If you’re pregnant, getting an ultrasound will give you the essential information you need to stay safe, including:
- Gestational age: During an ultrasound, many women are surprised to learn that their pregnancy is much further along than they initially believed. Knowing your pregnancy’s gestational age is especially important as you consider your options (the abortion pill, for example, is only FDA-approved if your pregnancy is 10 weeks gestation or under).
- Location: Rarely will your pregnancy develop outside the uterus. This is a life-threatening emergency known as ectopic pregnancy—and you might not experience symptoms right away.
- Viability: Roughly 26% of pregnancies end in miscarriage, and it’s possible to experience one without immediate symptoms. If you’re having a miscarriage, you will need follow-up care to ensure you don’t face complications.
Where Can I Get a Prenatal Ultrasound for Free?
At Choose Hope Women’s Center, we offer free, limited ultrasounds because we believe you deserve the information you need to stay safe.
Contact us today to schedule your free, confidential appointment. You’re not alone in this. We’re here for you!