20 week ultrasound
In an extensive conversation we tell you everything about the 20-week ultrasound. You can also ask us questions. Then you choose whether you want to have the 20-week ultrasound done or not. We prefer to preform the ultrasound between 19+0 and 20+0 week gestation. At the 20-week ultrasound the ultrasound technician checks whether your child has physical abnormalities. The 20-week ultrasound scan is not a pre-ultrasound scan, but a medical examination. The ultrasound is made of your child through your belly. At the 20-week ultrasound, the entire child is viewed well. Only specially trained ultrasound technicians perform this 20-week ultrasound at Femme-Amsterdam.
The ultrasound technician must concentrate well during the examination. That is why it is nice if you do not bring small children, experience shows that staying 40 minutes quiet is often very difficult for the little ones ;)
The ultrasound technician examines your child from head to toe. She checks whether your child has physical abnormalities. She also checks whether your child is growing well, whether there is enough amniotic fluid and where the placenta is located.
If the ultrasound considers a abnormality at the 20 week ultrasound, you can be very shocked. What will you do with the result? Do you want further research or not?
It is therefore important that you carefully consider whether you want the 20-week ultrasound. Discuss with your partner what you think about this. Questions that might help you:
- Do you want to know if your child has a defect before it is born?
- Why would you want the 20-week ultrasound? Why not?
- If the 20-week ultrasound shows that your child may have a physical abnormality, do you want to have a follow-up examination done?
- If the follow-up examination shows that your child does indeed have a physical disorder, how do you prepare for this?
- How do you view the possible termination of a pregnancy in the event of a serious physical disorder?
Do you find it difficult to decide what you want? Talk about it with us, your midwives and / or with family or friends. You can also use the “conscious choice” decision aid.
What physical abnormalities can the ultrasound technician see on the ultrasound?
Abnormalities that are often clearly visible: open skull, open back, fracture or hole in the abdominal wall, fracture or hole in the diaphragm, clubfoot, cleft lip, absence or abnormality of the kidneys, abnormalities of the arms or legs, abnormal development of the bones and heart defects.
The ultrasound technician cannot see everything. The ultrasound technician cannot see all abnormalities properly during the ultrasound examination. This applies, for example, to heart defects. At the time of the ultrasound, the child's heart is as large as a 10-cent coin. Because the heart is so small, the ultrasound technician only sees half of all heart defects. There are also abnormalities that occur later in the pregnancy. For example, some forms of a water head and kidney abnormalities.The 20-week ultrasound therefore gives no certainty. Your child can still have an abnormality if the result is good, so if she sees no abnormalities, this is no guarantee for a healthy child.
Do you want to know more about the deviations that are being screened; click here (its Dutch though)
In about 5 of the 100 pregnant women, the ultrasound technician sees something that can be a deviation. It is not always immediately clear whether it is indeed a deviation, how bad the deviation is and what this means for your child. That can then show further research.
If further research is needed
The ultrasound technician refers you to a specialist at a Center for Prenatal Diagnostics, at the UMC, location VUmc or AMC. You usually receive the follow-up examination within one week after the 20-week ultrasound, and you will receive an extensive ultrasound examination. This is called: an advanced ultrasound examination (GUO in Dutch). This examination is similar to the 20-week ultrasound, but often takes longer because they look more closely at smaller details of the child. Sometimes another specialist is also involved in the investigation. The specialists in the hospital investigate whether your child has something and what exactly your child has and what the consequences are for your child. That way you get more certainty.
Sometimes the doctor then suggests doing amniocenteses . This depends on the abnormality which is found during the follow-up investigation. The doctor first explains it to you well. You decide whether you want this research.
In the case of a amniocenteses, a doctor punctures the abdomen with a needle and takes a little bit of amniotic fluid. You lie on your back during the examination. In order not to touch your child, the doctor will check with an ultrasound where your child is. Of all 1,000 women who receive an amniotic fluid puncture, about 2 get a miscarriage.
You are not obliged to have a follow-up study done. You have to choose this yourself. You may also decide that you do not want this. You also decide for yourself what you want with the result of the (follow-up) examination.
The ultrasound examination does not hurt and is not harmful to your child.
The ultrasound technician wants to make another ultrasound. Why is that?
The ultrasound technician may not be able to see your child well enough. For women who are somewhat heavier, the research is sometimes more difficult to perform. Compare it with this example. It is difficult to look outside through a foggy and wet-rained car window. You cannot see the traffic clearly. Fatty tissue has an effect on the quality of the echo. Overweight women have more fat tissue. As a result, the ultrasound technician is often unable to view the child properly.
If you have to come back again, it does not mean that something is wrong with your child. Even if your child's location is difficult, the ultrasound technician can ask you to come back and make the ultrasound again.
If you are insured, your health insurance will pay the costs of the extensive conversation with your midwife and the 20-week ultrasound scan. There are no consequences for your deductibles.
Has a abnormality been seen on the 20-week ultrasound and do you opt for a follow-up examination? Your health insurer will then pay for the follow-up examination. It is possible that this is at the expense of your deductibles. Your health care provider can tell you more about this.
Do you decide that you want the 20-week ultrasound? We will then put this in your medical file. The results will also be included there. Your data and results also come in a Dutch national information system (Peridos). This information system is used, among other things, to check whether the quality of the screening is good throughout the country, how many pregnant women participate in the 20-week ultrasound scan and how many children are found with an abnormality. Your data is well protected. Do you not want your data to remain in the information system? Indicate this, after the screening can be removed from the information system.
Do you want more information of make an appointment for the 20-week ultrasound?