6 Ways Prenatal Ultrasound Impacts Health and/or Care

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Parental trust was linked to scan narrative.

The researchers focused their analysis on 23 eligible articles found in journal databases that described or searched for English-language studies describing related measures after prenatal imaging in expectant parents.

The majority of studies, 17 of 23, included only mothers’ experiences. Five involved both parents and one involved only fathers.

Here are six key insights the project produced, as reported in the university’s news service coverage on September 1:

1. The screening process begins before the scan appointment. The whole experience includes parents looking forward to the scan while “feeling simultaneously apprehensive about the possibility of unexpected news about their child.”

2. The scan is a pregnancy ritual. In the literature reviewed, parents viewed the scan as an expected and desired milestone.

3. When parents are actively involved in the inspection, their overall understanding of the process is improved. Rather than fathers who miss the experience, parents feel that fathers’ scan attendance not only supports mothers, but also “helps fathers who attend to bond with their fetuses.”

4. Parental priorities for knowledge and understanding change during pregnancy. In earlier stages of pregnancy, parents prioritize knowing that their pregnancy is successful. In the later stages, it is important for parents to know the presence of fetal abnormalities.

5. Parents want a sense of partnership with the ultrasound operator during the scan. In the literature, parents’ trust in their sonographer is related to the narrative of the scan. In addition, limiting the use of medical terminology ‚Äúdehumanizes the fetus, giving parents the sonographer’s understanding of the unborn child as an individual rather than a medical entity.

6. The scan helps create a social identity for the newborn. Many parents wrap their pregnancy news around scans, and some wait until their first scan to tell friends and family about their pregnancy. It was also common to share images or videos of scans so that “their support circle would have a sense of knowing the baby before birth.”

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