This is the ideal time to date the pregnancy. The EDD given at this scan is what will be used for the remainder of your pregnancy. During this scan, we will perform some basic anatomy checks to make sure everything is developing as it should at this stage of the pregnancy.
At this stage of the pregnancy, most babies develop normally however some can be affected by a chromosomal defect so during this stage of your pregnancy we can offer you the Combined Test. This test is a non-invasive screening test that will help determine if your baby is at an increased chance of being affected by Down’s syndrome, Edward’s Syndrome, or Patau’s Syndrome. This is done by measuring the length of your baby (CRL), measuring a fluid pocket on the back of your baby’s neck (all babies have this at this stage of pregnancy), and a blood test from your arm. The blood test will look at two hormones (Betta HCG and PAPPA ). We will also need some information about you as the mother. Once we have all of the information our laboratory will be able to calculate an estimation of the mother’s individual chance of this baby being affected by one of these three chromosomal abnormalities. Mothers with a chance of 1:150 or greater may choose to have NIPT or a diagnostic test such as an amniocentesis or CVS.
This can offer you peace of mind about the development of your baby and allow you to make an informed decision in moving forward.
To summarize the purpose of Nuchal scan:
1. Date the pregnancy
2. Identify multiple pregnancies
3. Detect and diagnose major defects
4. Diagnose possible miscarriage
5. Calculate the risk of chromosomal abnormalities such as Downs Syndrome T21, Syndrome Patau’s T13, and Syndrome Edwards T18
The risk is calculated by considering the age of the mother, measurement of two hormones in maternal blood, and the scan findings of nuchal translucency thickness and possible fetal abnormalities detected by the scan.