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What do ultrasounds during pregnancy check for?

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Ultrasounds (sonograms) can be done any time during your pregnancy, but are most often offered at week 20. A sonogram can confirm the due date, check if you’re carrying more than one baby, look for problems like slow fetal growth or birth defects.

During an ultrasound, a device is moved across your belly. It transmits sound waves to create an image of your uterus and baby on a computer monitor. New 3D sonograms can make an even clearer picture of your baby. They’re not available everywhere, and it's not clear that they’re more useful than 2D pictures for healthy pregnancy or birth.

SOURCES:
Gabbe: Obstetrics-Normal and Problem Pregnancies, 4th edition, 2002.
WebMD Medical Reference provided in collaboration with The Cleveland Clinic: "Pregnancy: Your Guide to Pregnancy."
WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise: "Rh Sensitization During Pregnancy;" "Doppler Ultrasound;" and "Fetoscopy."

Reviewed by Traci C. Johnson on January 30, 2019

SOURCES:
Gabbe: Obstetrics-Normal and Problem Pregnancies, 4th edition, 2002.
WebMD Medical Reference provided in collaboration with The Cleveland Clinic: "Pregnancy: Your Guide to Pregnancy."
WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise: "Rh Sensitization During Pregnancy;" "Doppler Ultrasound;" and "Fetoscopy."

Reviewed by Traci C. Johnson on January 30, 2019

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