Monday, March 21, 2011

ultrasound: 2nd trimester

The second trimester starts at the end of 12 weeks AOG (age of gestation).

I had mine at 21 weeks AOG which is a common time to get one since the baby's gender can be readily determined. And yes, since the family has had enough time guessing if the baby's a girl or a boy. And also, there is the pressing need to start buying baby stuffs and accessories by the 6th month where in knowing the baby's gender would come in handy.

But could gender be determined at a much earlier time?

In order to be certain the sonologist  should reassure himself that he actually sees the penis and scrotum in the case of a boy and the labia in the case of a girl. The absence of the penis must not be taken as sufficient evidence of the fetus being a girl. The 3-lines sign which denotes the labia in the fetus is a very valid and accurate indication of the female gender (at right). Most of the time one should be able to tell the sex of the baby by about 20 weeks and very often even at sixteen. With modern equipment, the diagnosis can be made even as early as 11 to 12 weeks (at right). On the other hand, as the correct visualization of any fetal part depends of a host of factors such as fetal position, amount of fluid and thickness of the abdominal wall.

The pictures here are not from my own ultrasound but ones i got from the internet.

The one on top is at 21weeks AOG which shows the baby thumb sucking which one of their common activity as in these times, reflexes are already present to help them survive life outside the womb.

In my own ultrasound, the spine is also evident and in place and during the 20-24wks of gestation, the baby undergoes a fast growth which would require a lot of vitamins and minerals essential for it.
Our OB emphasized on Calcium and Iron and had prescribed supplements for me since it was not uncommon  for pregnant women to loose teeth during this period due to calcium deficiency nor develop iron-deficiency anemia during pregnancy.

The OB also checked out the baby's cardiac activity. The normal heart rate at this time is at 120 to 160 beats per minute. His heart valves are already working in sync!

Also, the placenta is already in place. It is good that I don't have a low lying placenta or placenta previa which would cause common labor complications like bleeding and/or the need for a Ceasarean section.

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