A typical ultrasound used to be a grainy, black and white image with the shadowy form of your baby. Fortunately, that's changed. Cabell Huntington Hospital uses 4D ultrasound to capture images of your unborn baby. Four-dimensional, or 4D, ultrasound takes three-dimensional ultrasound images and adds the element of time to the process. The result is live action images of your unborn child with far more detail and definition than any other imaging process available. A 4D ultrasound provides a sharper picture of your baby, and it serves as a powerful tool that can help physicians studying the baby's motion and behavior, the baby's surface anatomy and problems related to the mother's uterus and ovaries.
The procedure for traditional and 4D ultrasound is essentially the same. Both technologies use sound waves to look inside the body. A probe placed on the body emits sound waves into the body, listens for the return echo and generates an image.
In order to get a clear picture of the baby, you should be at least 18 weeks into your pregnancy. When your doctor determines that you need an ultrasound and writes orders for one, you can get a 4D ultrasound. An appointment is required. Your doctor can make the appointment, and the staff will be happy to answer any questions you may have when you arrive.