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Obstetric Ultrasound is an imaging tool that provides pictures of an embryo or fetus within a woman's uterus.

Who performs the procedure?

The procedure is performed by a Sonographer with the assistance of a Radiologist.

Why is this procedure performed?

There are several reasons why an obstetric ultrasound may be performed, including:

  • To establish the presence of a living embryo/fetus
  • To estimate the age of the pregnancy
  • To diagnose congenital abnormalities
  • To evaluate the position of the baby
  • To evaluate the position of the placenta
  • To determine if there are multiple pregnancies
  • To determine the amount of amniotic fluid around the baby
  • To check for opening or shortening of the cervix or mouth of the womb

Where is the procedure performed?

University Imaging Center
University of Maryland Professional Building, Suite 110
419 West Redwood Street
Baltimore, Maryland 21201

University of Maryland Medical Center
Department of Diagnostic Radiology, 2nd Floor
22 South Greene Street
Baltimore, Maryland 21201

Is there any prep for this procedure?

You will need to have a full bladder for the procedure. Air interferes with sound waves, so if your bladder is distended, the air-filled bowel is pushed out of the way by the bladder and an image of the uterus and embryo or fetus is obtained. Drink a minimum of 32 ounces of clear fluid at least one hour before appointment. Do not empty your bladder.

What can I expect before the procedure?

Once you arrive at the Imaging Center, you will have to register at the front desk.  Please have your insurance information ready at this time.  After registration, you will be taken to the Ultrasound department where you will be instructed to remove all clothing and jewelry in the area to be examined.

What can I expect during the procedure?

You will be lying on your back while a gel is applied to the area of the body being studied.  The Sonographer will then press the transducer firmly against the skin and move it back and forth over the area of interest.  At times the Sonographer may have to press more firmly to get closer to the embryo or fetus to better visualize the structure. Any discomfort is usually minimal and temporary. Several images are captured during the procedure. There may be a little discomfort from pressure as the transducer is pressed against the area being examined.

What can I expect after the procedure?

After an ultrasound exam, you may be asked to dress and wait until the ultrasound images are reviewed.  At this time, you will be able to use the restroom. You should be able to resume your normal activities.

Are there any risks to this procedure?

There are no known risks with this procedure.

Are there any alternatives to this procedure?

No alternatives are available for this procedure.

How do I schedule an appointment?

Please call the Radiology Access Center at 410-328-3225.