Ultrasounds have been a point of concern for me for a number of years. The lack of research into how ultrasound waves may effect the developing prenate gives me reason to shy away from them.With the concerns voiced around the internet and ACOG's own stance on "nonmedical" ultrasounds leaves me questioning the wide-scale, routine, over-use of yet another maternity intervention.
... then when the listening to mothers survey III was released and I saw that almost 50% (HALF!) of women are receiving 4 or more ultrasounds!! WHY!?!?
I am of the opinion that a healthy pregnancy and mother have no need for an ultrasound - seeing as how cuurent research doesn't support routine ultrasounds and since we don't have conclusive data to demonstrate that even one exposure to ultrasound waves doesn't alter neuronal brain growth, reproductive organ development, or other sensitive forms of embryonic development.
Do you REALLY need to know the sex of your baby early? At the risk of their optimal development?
The evidence from the Cochrane Review demonstrates that late pregnancy ultrasounds (those that occur after 24 weeks gestation) "do not confer any benefit on mother or baby. It may be associated with a small increase in cesarean section rates." Well I certainly don't think we need anything else contributing to our high cesarean section rate!
Here is one of my attempts to educate the public and to curb the excessive use of ultrasounds in pregnancy.
Enjoy! and PLEASE feel free to share!
What do you think? How many ultrasounds did you have in your pregnancy?
Happy birth advocating!
~Wisdom and Birth
The sites referenced in the slide are:
Listening to Mothers Survey III