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A Definition and Overview Of 3D Ultrasound, Discussing Its Uses, Benefits, And Anticipated Outcomes


Medical sonography using 3D ultrasound, or phased array ultrasonic’s to give it its full scientific name, was first patented in 1987. Though it has other medical applications, ultrasound is most often employed in obstetrics with the aim of acquiring three-dimensional images of a fetus during pregnancy?

Sonography uses high-frequency sound waves to examine organs and tissues deep within the body. The echoes that are sent back from the ultrasound equipment at various angles are then used to create three-dimensional images.

Who Should Get It, and What Are the Expected Benefits?

If you want more detailed photographs of your unborn child than a regular 2D scan can provide, you may want to consider getting a 3D ultrasound. The period between the 24th and 32nd weeks of pregnancy is optimal for the operation. The foetus’s descent into the pelvis after the 32nd week makes it more difficult to obtain high-quality 3D photos.

Patients who are interested in finding out the gender of their unborn child can also benefit from the ultrasound. This scan is most commonly performed between the 16th and 20th week of pregnancy, when the accuracy rate is 99%.Although 3D ultrasonography is often used to have a clear view of the unborn foetus and to establish the gender during pregnancy, it is crucial to remember that this practice is entirely voluntary.

When a pregnancy are at a different stage, there may be other factors to consider when deciding whether or not to get an ultrasound. The vast majority of prenatal scans are carried out in the first trimester to:

Check the uterus, cervix, ovaries, and placenta.

Check the developing fetus for any signs of abnormalities or growth.

A majority of scans are done in the second trimester to:

Identify the gender of the infant.

Ensure there is no placenta prolapsed or placental abruption.

Assessment for birth defects, structural anomalies, and circulation issues

Check for foetal tumors.

Check for foetal malformations such as cleft palate and spinal cord issues.

More detailed images are provided by 3D ultrasound scans than 2D scans, so they are more useful than 2D scans for detecting and verifying pregnancy-related concerns. Yet, similar to 4D scans, they are not generally accepted as standard prenatal procedures. 4D scans, which add time as a fourth dimension, can provide moving movies of the foetus in the womb, and while 3D scans can only produce still photos.

How does one carry out the operation?

Patients undergoing a 3D ultrasound are typically advised to recline on the assessment table. An ultrasound gel-like material is then applied to the patient’s tummy by the obstetrician or ultrasound technologist. The best images can then be obtained by placing a transducer probe or wand against the belly and moving it around.

If the foetus is in a favorable position, the surgery can be completed in as little as ten to fifteen minutes. It causes no discomfort to the pregnant woman or her baby and is completely painless.


After the scan, the patient can buy copies of the 3D foetal pictures that were made during the procedure.

Prospective Harms and Problems

Scans in 3D are completely risk-free for both the mother and the child. Most 3D ultrasound equipment made specifically for obstetrical ultrasound scans has their energy level adjusted below FDA guidelines, as the FDA limits the amount of energy utilized during the operation to just 94 mW/cm2.

Even so, it is advised by a number of medical groups that parents be informed of the potential dangers of being exposed to ultrasound energy during the scan. Once absorbed by the body, ultrasonic energy can cause localized heating of tissues and, in some cases, the formation of gas bubbles in the affected area(s) and surrounding fluids.

As a result of assertions like these, researchers have examined the potential dangers of 3D ultrasonography on multiple occasions. Some research found an association between the use of ultrasonography and left-handedness in male infants, a trait that is typically indicative of brain damage if not inherited. Ultrasound has also been linked to a host of other neurodevelopment issues in children, including language delays, reading difficulties, intellectual disability, and even schizophrenia. Furthermore, a study conducted on pregnant mice in 2006 revealed that exposure to ultrasonography induced brain damage that is similar to that found in autistic people’s brains. Long-term exposure to ultrasonic energy has been associated with these adverse effects, which are generally attributed to tissue manipulation. Ultrasound scans pose little danger because they take so little time to complete.


Fatma Mahmoud
Fatma Mahmoud

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