LRH Now Providing Moms-to-be 3D, Life-like Ultrasound Images of Their Child
Moms-to-be are now able to receive diagnostic ultrasounds that offer much more life like, detailed images via Lakes Regional Healthcare’s new 3D/4D ultrasound system.
Ultrasound is used to capture diagnostic images of organs and structures inside the body, including the abdominal and pelvic organs, carotid arteries, veins, pregnant uterus, and fetus. In conventional 2D ultrasound scanning, the image is made up of a series of thin images, also known as slices, and only one slice can be seen at any one time. With 3D ultrasound scanning, a volume of slices are taken, stored digitally, and shaded to produce life like pictures of the fetus. 3D images are still, non-moving images, whereas 4D images are 3D images that are moving pictures. The 4D images are live, which means the baby can be seen moving in real time inside the womb. For example, with 4D scanning, the fetus can be seen to yawn, suck their fingers, rub their eyes, see their lip quiver, and perform intricate finger and toe movements, all of which can be seen more commonly as pregnancy advances. Another benefit of 4D ultrasound scanning is the increased bonding that occurs between parents and baby as a result of seeing a more realistic, moving image.
Ultrasound does not involve radiation. 3D/4D scans use the same type and intensity of ultrasound as is used with conventional 2D scanning. After extensive studies over 30 years, ultrasound has not been shown to cause any harm to mother or baby.
Lakes Regional Healthcare routinely provides 3D/4D ultrasounds to pregnant patients with their 2D ultrasound examination if the conditions are right. According to Lakes Regional Healthcare Radiology Manager Tracy Evans, “This is amazing technology, and parents really enjoy seeing the images we create. The best time to get an image of the baby is between 24 and 34 weeks of pregnancy. During that time the face has more fat on it, and it has developed enough to get a realistic, detailed image. Also in order to get the best images, the baby needs to be positioned well and amniotic fluid should be present in front of the area we want to scan.”
A physician’s referral is necessary to receive an ultrasound. Anyone interested in learning more about LRH’s 3D/4D ultrasound is encouraged to talk to their local family physician, visit Lakes Regional Healthcare’s web site at http://www.lakeshealth.org to see an example of a 4D image, or call Lakes Regional Healthcare’s Radiology department at 712-336-8658.