Kevin had been on the bandwagon about me getting a 4D ultrasound for a while. I had my reservations – it is not covered by insurance; I didn’t want the baby exposed to more radiation than is necessary; I had a weird fear that if the baby looked creepy in the shots, that I would be imagining him looking creepy when he came out. If you look through Google image search results for “4D ultrasound”, you get everything from super-cute to Nightmare on Elm Street…
Well, at 32 weeks and 5 days, I bit the bullet and we had it done at Bumrungrad Hospital. It was actually performed on the same machine as the standard ultrasound – just involved flipping a switch of some sort. The 4D scan involves sound waves sent down into the uterus from different angles instead of straight down as in a standard 2D scan. What in the heck is the difference between 3D and 4D, you ask (I know I did!)? With 3D there is a slight delay in what you are seeing on the screen (compared to what is actually happening in the ‘ol womb), whereas 4D is capturing real time fetal footage.
There are several potential problems which may keep you from capturing clear images – a fetus which is too large (we are a bit late in the game for doing this, although the opposite problem can occur as well – too early in development, and what you will see will not resemble the ‘baby’ you hope to eventually have!); not enough amniotic fluid; head facing down (away from your belly’s surface where the probe-thing will be making contact with your skin); and baby’s face covered up by arms or hands or shoved up too closely against your uterine wall.
Our problem was the last on that list – little Fergus’ face was hugging his mama’s soft, cushion-y uterus. He moved it away sightly a couple of times, but it was never enough to get a great shot. Nevertheless, here is what came out of our visit, as provided to us on CD by the hospital:
Face, with hands in view
Bottom half of face, with mouth open (yes, I am aware that this looks creepy!)
Kevin also took the following video of the experience on his ipad. You can see Fergus’ right hand rubbing his eye (which is something I joked we would see as Kevin is compulsive about eye rubbing when he is settling into bed for the night), and eventually yawning, where he moves his head, which distorts the view and makes it appear as though his eyes are popping out of his head. I try to ignore that part…(click on the link below to watch):
While we were there, some standard 2D scan measurements were taken. It appears that we still have a big baby in some respects. The large head situation, well, rears its head again, for lack of a better expression!
To remind you, his actual age is 32w 5d, but gestational age according to this head measurement alone is 34w 3d. Yikes! I think it might be time to get my hands (and vagina) on an EpiNo…
Fetal weight is measured in grams here, and according to the scan, Fergus was 2138g, or 4lb 11oz.
In case you are curious as to the total cost and breakdown: 5,370 Thai baht (approx. US$174.24)
- Doctor’s Fee – 500.00 baht
- Facility Fee – 210.00 baht
- Laboratory – Clinical – 180.00 baht
- Ultrasound – 2,680.00 baht
- Ultrasound – Radiologist’s Fee – 1800.00 baht