What No One Ever Told You About Second Trimester Ultrasound

August 22, 2013

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We are mamas and birth workers who decided to do birth differently– and bring others along with us. We are kind, fun to work with, and great at (lovingly) calling people on their bullshit. With 12 children and 20 years of midwifery between us, we’ve learned a thing or two along the way, and Indie Birth is our space to share it all with you.


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In this episode of Taking Back Birth, I talk about second trimester ultrasound and open up your mind to information you won’t commonly be given. This is a hot topic and we all know someone who could learn and grow from this podcast! Please share and feel free to leave comments.

Just press PLAY below to listen. And if you enjoy this podcast, you will love our “pay what you can” comprehensive online course 13 Moons: Epic Education for the Birthing Year.

You can download a transcription PDF here


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  1. earthymomma32828 says:

    I would have liked more information about the studies mentioned, specifically the one involving the effects of future generations because I did not find anything like that in my own research. Either way, this was an interesting podcast, one that will hopefully open the door of awareness on this issue.

  2. Thanks for your feedback! Here is an excerpt from Sarah Buckley’s article regarding the effect of ultrasound on future generations…” Cell abnormalities caused by exposure to ultrasound were seen to persist for several generations.20″. The link to this great article is below. Also, check out Sarah’s “Gentle Birth, Gentle Mothering”…an amazing and informative read!

  3. Jamie Meriwether says:

    Do you have any information available on 1st trimester scans, especially early scans in conjunction with IVF? My husband and I are in the process of IVF and I have been unable to find any statistics on post-conception scans. At our embryo transfer a couple days ago, we were told that if the embryo takes we’ll have to have a routine 7-week scan to confirm that the pregnancy is not ectopic, as the rate of occurrence of ectopic is as great as 5% for IVF pregnancies. Our RE says the scan is mandatory, but I do not want to put myself or my child, no matter how young, at risk, and both my husband and I agreed going into this that we would do no ultrasounds post conception. However, my doctor has me scared enough that I am inclined to give in an have it done. Any information resources you could point me to would be greatly appreciated.

  4. Yes, of course there is risk to these early scans..even if deemed “medically necessary”. I understand the increased risk of ectopic so I would weigh each side and the benefits and risks as best you can and make the right decision for you. Ectopic pregnancies can “look” a certain way when looking at early pregnancy bloodwork, plus there are signs/symptoms for most women as well. I would search and look for statistics of early pregnancy scans (again, Sarah Buckley is a great resource) since these are very, very common and no one is talking about the increased rate of miscarriage and ill effects to the embryo. Best of luck in making the best choice for you.

  5. Mindi Rosser says:

    This podcast could not have come at a better time for me! I was scheduled for my 2nd trimester ultrasound, but I had my doubts about going through with it. This podcast helped me decide not to have the ultrasound.

    Since this is my first pregnancy, all of this information is very new to me. I started out with a typical OB/Gyn. Transferred to a midwife for a homebirth. Now, I’m seriously considering an unassisted birth. I’m happiest when I’m “tampered with” less. It’s amazing how I have gone from being completely dependent on the traditional medical system to “taking back birth.”

    I am not overstating when I say that your podcast has literally given me power to have the birth I thought was unattainable in the real world. I’m taking back birth! 🙂

  6. Thank you so much for sharing this with us! There is nothing more thrilling than hearing about women taking back their power in birth through education. We are so thankful that you shared with us and look forward to supporting you more in any way if you need it! Blessings on your birth.

  7. Mana says:

    Thank you so much for sharing. I just read Sarah Buckley’s article. I am in my second pregnancy and intuively chosen to not having ultrasounds. This is my first time on this website and after this good read I’m excited to listen and read more of the interesting birth related topics. Greetings from the Netherlands!!

  8. Lara says:

    I’m worried if I tell my midwife at a hospital practice that I don’t want ultrasounds, they will drop me as a patient. Is that a possibility? I haven’t met her yet, I scheduled my first appointment for 8 weeks and they automatically said on the phone “so we have you down for your first ultrasound” and I asked can I decline that? And she said I’ll have to talk about it with the midwife when I’m there. Ultimately I know the choice is mine and I can go somewhere else, but maybe you can help me develop what I would say to the midwife to express that I don’t want ultrasounds, or at least just one and not multiple

  9. […] What no one ever told you about second trimester ultrasounds […]

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We are mamas and midwives who decided to do birth differently– and bring others along with us. We are radical, fun to work with, and great at (lovingly) calling people on their bullshit to help move us all towards a new more beautiful world. With 12 children and over two decades of midwifery between us, we’ve learned a thing or two along the way, and Indie Birth is our space to share it all with you.

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