February 15, 2012

Still a Girl

Today was our second anatomy scan (a/s). Yep, Zippy was so uncooperative last time that they weren’t able to get all the images they wanted to see the first time around, so we needed to repeat the scan. The previous technician sort of warned us this might happened. During today’s scan they look at everything again, including double checking her gender. This makes three ultrasounds were she was predicted to be a girl. While I suppose there’s always a chance an ultrasound was wrong, the odds that all three are wrong are pretty slim so I think it’s safe to paint the nursery.

Needing to go in for a second anatomy scan was a little nerve racking. We knew there was something they didn’t like on the first scan, so we would be seeing a perinatologist (a high risk specialist). It also didn’t help my fears that when they couldn’t reach me by phone they still went ahead and booked us at the earliest appointment. Our midwife tried to assure us that the doctor was just being cautious, and the only reason to bring us back in was because they didn’t get enough images the first time around. She said these things happen about a third of the time. When I kept asking questions she pulled up our file and let it slip that they needed more pictures of the brain. That’s when I really started to panic – it’s kind of an important organ!

But I’m happy to report everything looked great! She’s a very healthy little girl. What had concerned them before turned out to be just a miss measurement.

As an added benefit of the second anatomy scan, the specialists had one of those neat 4D ultrasound machines. (The first place we had the a/s didn’t have the capability.) This early, the 3D scan looks a little weird. I keep referring to it as the ‘lumpy baby’ or the ‘alien baby’.

Zippy at 13 weeks

Zippy at 21 weeks, lounging away

And I thought those predict what your future baby would look like simulates generated scary images!

The technician did confirm that her position is very close to the surface. This could be why we’ve been able to feel so much movement so early on. It’s also part of the reason why the ultrasound technicians always struggle with her. Just like in photography, the depth of field is determined partial by the focusing distance. Since zippy is so close to the surface, the focusing distance (distance between the ultrasound wand and zippy) is small. Therefore the depth of field is shallow. This means the technician often can’t focus on multiple things at once. The technician joked I needed more “padding” to make things easier. Ha!

I’m a little sad that this will be the last time we get to see our baby girl until she arrives. I have to admit I’m tempted to do an elective scan just to see her again at 30 weeks when the 3D scan will look less alien like. I’m torn. There’s no medical need for an additional scan, and I know once she’s born, the ultrasound pictures will not be as exciting as photos of her! On the other hand, she’s our first and no more ultrasounds means waiting 19ish weeks to see her again.

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