What is ultrasound imaging?
To keep it simple, ultrasound technology uses high frequency sound waves which reflect off of tissue and return to the machine. Depending on the density of the surfaces they encounter, the waves come back at different frequencies. The machine then process this data and generate (render) it into realistic surface images.
What is an elective prenatal ultrasound?
Think of when your baby is born, from its first breath, there is a camera there to capture its every movement. Elective prenatal ultrasound takes this concept to the next level, because a parent shouldn’t be limited to taking pictures only after their baby is born! With the ultrasound technology of today you can create memories that will last a lifetime!
What is the difference between 2D, 3D and 4D ultrasound?
2D is the traditional black & white ultrasound you have probably seen before. The pictures just show flat, two-dimensional outlines of the baby. A 2D ultrasound is the diagnostic procedure that you will experience as part of your prenatal care. This specific ultrasound is ordinarily used to listen to the fetus’ heartbeat, gender determination and It is still the best technology for gathering measurements of the baby, and ensuring that the baby is developing as expected.
3D ultrasound is an advanced method which captures a true, three-dimensional image of your baby. The transducer (sound wave transmitter) sends out sound waves from numerous directions and as a result makes a life-like realistic images, which easily display the little one’s attributes. You can see the roundness of the baby’s face, the shape of the nose and the contours of the lips. The color is actually not the color of the baby, it is computer enhanced to make the pictures more appealing.
4D ultrasound is the exact same technology as 3D with the difference that you can see the motion of the baby . A number of shots are taken continuously showing real time imagery of the baby. It’s like a window straight into the womb that allows you to have a look at the fetus moving about, perhaps yawning, smiling or sucking it’s thumb! If your baby has a large, clear pocket of amniotic fluid around the face and is developed enough, then we can get great clips of motion.
Is it safe? I wouldn’t want to risk my baby’s health for my own pleasure!
Extensive studies over 30 years have found that ultrasound has not been shown to cause any harm to mother or baby. Routine scanning of all pregnancies is now normal throughout the United States and around the world. In 3D/4D scanning, exactly the same type and intensity of ultrasound waves is used as with conventional 2D scanning.
Does this take the place of my routine diagnostic ultrasound?
Definitely not! Elective prenatal ultrasound is purely for the joy of the baby-to-be’s family, as well as a true bonding experience between the parents and their baby. Women seeking an elective prenatal ultrasound must already be receiving treatment with a healthcare provider for prenatal care and have already undergone a medical, diagnostic ultrasound ordered by their provider to confirm their due date, screen for fetal anomalies, and to look for any other pregnancy related issues. At no time should elective ultrasound be used as a substitute for a complete diagnostic ultrasound.
What’s the best time in the pregnancy for a 3D/4D ultrasound?
Prenatal Imaging Centers can perform an ultrasound at any time during the pregnancy, but the best 3D/4D imaging results are generally acquired between 26 to 34 weeks. If you are a small framed girl, you may want to consider coming in earlier rather than later. For average to plus sized women usually 28-32 weeks is a good time. As always, drinking lots of water and other fluids is the best thing you can do to get better images. This increases the amniotic fluid and makes it more clear.
Do I need to make an appointment?
Yes, appointments are necessary. We offer easy online scheduling so you can book your appointment at your convenience, or feel free to call us to schedule your 3D/4D ultrasound session over the phone. Keep in mind, evening and weekend appointments are the most popular and fill the fastest.
We require $50 deposit for evening and weekend appointments to secure your time spot. We accept all major credit cards and can take the deposit over the phone. The deposit is applied towards the purchase price of your session and is fully refundable if you cancel your appointment with at least 24 hours notice. If the notice is less than 24 hours or in case of no-show, you will forfeit the deposit.
Please be sure to arrive on time for your appointment. If you are more than 15 minutes late, we may have to reschedule your appointment in order to ensure minimal wait times for our clients.
Can my family and friends come and enjoy this with me?
Of course! We encourage and welcome you to bring your friends and family to your ultrasound session. Your 3D/4D ultrasound session is a special chance to share your baby before birth, so please bring guests! Our theater seats 15 comfortably, although we can easily accommodate 25 people. With our two 60’ TV monitors and theater seating, all of your guests can see your baby without a kinked neck. We provide the most enjoyable experience for mom and her guests!
For your friends and family who cannot attend the session, you can invite them to view your session through our Skype Station. Your guests can view your 3D/4D ultrasound from their own internet-connected device from anywhere on the Globe. Please contact us for details.
Is the 3D/4D ultrasound covered by Insurance?
At this point, insurance does not cover the costs of 3D/4D elective ultrasounds. Since this is an elective procedure for entertainment purpose only and is not intended to be a replacement for your doctor ordered ultrasound, you will need to pay the cost of this ultrasound as an out-of-pocket expense.
What are my payment options?
You can pre-pay online or in person at the time of your appointment. We accept cash, all major credit cards (Visa, Master Card, American Express, Discovery, etc.), debit cards, and PayPal. Sorry, we do not accept personal checks. Gift Certificates also available.
Is there anything I should do before I get there? How do I get the best results?
To help you obtain the best pictures, be sure to drink plenty of water and other fluids 4 to 5 days before your appointment. Hydration can increase the amniotic fluid and improve the clarity of your ultrasound. You don’t need to have a full bladder.
What should I wear?
We recommend that you wear comfortable clothing, preferably two-piece. Remember, our sonographer will need to access your abdomen during the 3D/4D ultrasound session.
What kind of baby activity will I see?
It depends. Some babies sleep right through the ultrasound and move very little. Others show off by touching their faces, sucking their thumb, smiling, waving arms and legs and more. What will your baby do?
Will I always get a beautiful picture of my baby?
Usually, but not always. Sometimes if the baby is persistently looking face down, i.e. towards your spine it may be difficult to see the baby’s face. If this happens, a repeat scan will usually succeed because the baby will have turned to a favorable position. We make no promises that the images will be similar to those you might have seen elsewhere or even from our office, or that we can always meet everyone’s expectations. Every baby scans differently, depending on its gestational age, position, amount of fluid, and mother’s body type. We promise to make every effort to obtain the best possible images of whatever parts of the baby that can be seen.
The most frequent type of picture we see shows one-half to two-thirds of baby’s face. The reason for this is because of your baby’s position. For instance, your baby may be positioned toward your spine or have one arm on her face. Some families do see 100% of their baby’s face while others see more of a profile. Your baby is the director of the show! Your baby will determine how much of her face you get to see. Many of our families will schedule multiple sessions, like our Double Premium Package, so they can watch their baby grow throughout the pregnancy. Every session is different in amazing ways!
I’m a plus sized mom. Will I be able to get pictures?
We work with moms of all sizes, and most of the time, yes, we’re able to get 3D pictures for plus sized moms. However, maternal tissue is an obstacle to 3D pictures since the sound waves must travel through the extra tissue. The 3D photos may be grainier than typical, but the most important part is that you’ll see and bond with your baby. That’s what this experience is all about. At Prenatal Imaging Centers, we make every effort to get you images of your baby. Be sure to stay hydrated and drink your doctor’s recommended daily allowance for water at least 4 to 5 days prior to your appointment, as hydration is the key to getting better quality images.
I am having twins. Is there any additional fee?
No. We love twins and don’t charge extra for twins. We recommend you select a 3D/4D session at least 25 minutes long. Imaging of twins is more difficult, so the additional time is helpful, and we always try our best to get you 3D images. It’s recommended to have your session between 22 and 28 weeks for the best chance of capturing images of both babies. After 28 weeks, the babies become bigger with much less room and it may become more difficult to capture their images together. The experience of seeing your twins in a 4D ultrasound, however, is priceless — you’ll get a good glimpse of how your twins will interact with each other. When scheduling your appointment online, just add a message to your appointment that you have twins.
What if I need to cancel or reschedule?
We offer a flexible and fair cancellation policy. Should you need to cancel or reschedule your appointment for any reason, we ask that you please call 48 hours ahead of your scheduled time. Also, please be sure to arrive on time for your appointment. If you are more than 15 minutes late, we may have to reschedule your appointment in order to ensure minimal wait times for our clients. In case of no-show at your scheduled appointment, you will be required a full pre-payment should you elect to re-schedule again.
If you are late or do not show at your 15 minutes re-scan under Free-Come-Back Policy, it will be forfeited.