About 3D Ultrasound
3D ultrasound is a medical ultrasound technique often used in obstetric ultrasonography providing three dimensionl images of the fetus.
How does it work?
In 3D fetal scanning instead of the sound waves being sent straight down and reflected back, they are sent at different angles. The returning echoes are processed by a sophisticated computer program resulting in a reconstructed three dimensional volume image of fetus’s surface or internal organs, in much the same way as a CT scan machine constructs a CT scan image from multiple x-rays. 3D ultrasounds allow one to see width, height and depth of images in much the same way as a 3D movies but no movement is shown.
Benefits of 3D Ultrasound
Although there is no direct medical benefit of receiving an elective 3D ultrasound, there may be many indirect benefits, as listed below. It is important to note that there has been no conclusive evidencein medical literature to support these benefits.
Risks of 3D Ultrasounds
Generally, the risks of 3D ultrasound mirror those of regular ultrasounds, as it uses the same ultrasound waves at the same intensity. Unlike the comparison of CT scans to x-rays, 3D ultrasounds do not employ multiple snapshots of 2D ultrasounds but uses the 2D ultrasound images taken at various angels to construct an image. The risk of ultrasounds, theoretically, would depend on the following factors:
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- Duration of ultrasound exposure
- Intensity of ultrasound waves
- Frequency of ultrasound sessions