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I had no idea what to expect when it came to my 12-week ultrasound.
Even though I was excited to finally see an image of my daughter, I was also terrified about the possibility of finding out something might be wrong with her.
So, on the day of the scan, I found myself sitting in the waiting room trying my best to occupy myself with magazines, social media or anything else I could get my hands on.
Finally, my husband and I were called back and the ultrasound started. Within seconds, we saw our baby girl on the screen and as I had anticipated, she was the most beautiful thing I had ever laid my eyes on.
However, as I laid there, I couldn’t help but wonder what they were looking for, if the ultrasound was actually safe for myself and my baby, and whether or not I was going to find out the results that day. Curious, I asked the technician a few questions about the ultrasound but she was so preoccupied with measuring my baby that she couldn’t give the detailed explanations I was hoping for.
Fifteen minutes later, the ultrasound was finished and my husband and I were relieved to find out that our daughter was 100% healthy.
But, even though I was happy with my results, I couldn’t help but wonder why we have a scan at this time in pregnancy, whether or not it’s safe and what the indicators of a healthy baby are?
This curiosity is what lead me to reach out to Dr. Camille Hoffman, a Maternal Fetal Medicine physician at the University of Colorado to find out everything there is to know about the 12-week ultrasound.
I hope that Dr. Hoffman’s answers leave you feeling informed, empowered and confident in your decisions when it comes to your 12-week ultrasound.
Camille Hoffman, MD, MSCS, is an Associate Professor of Maternal Fetal Medicine in the University of Colorado School of Medicine Departments of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Psychiatry. She is a clinician-scientist who studies the impact of perinatal stress on pregnancy outcomes and on maternal-child mental health. Her current research focuses on pregnancy interventions to improve multigenerational mental health. She serves as Principal Investigator or co-investigator on several federally and privately funded research grants. Her research was featured in a Rocky Mountain Public Broadcasting System documentary on health disparities in infant mortality entitled “Precious Loss.” Dr. Hoffman has clinical expertise in the management of high-risk pregnancies, obstetric ultrasound, and perinatal mental health. She is a founding board member of the Marcé Society of North America and also serves as the social media director for the International Marcé society for Perinatal Mental Health. Dr. Hoffman completed medical school at the Medical University of South Carolina, Obstetrics & Gynecology residency at the University of Miami, and her Maternal Fetal Medicine fellowship at the University of Colorado. She recently completed a fellowship in Integrative Medicine through the University of Arizona. She lives in the Rocky Mountain front-range with her husband, two children, many bicycles and a menagerie of farm animals.
Pregnancy can be a time of great excitement but also one filled with a lot of uncertainty, especially when it comes to things like testing. It’s my hope that providing education around the 12 week scan during this interview with Dr. Camille Hoffman helps you to feel empowered throughout their pregnancy and informs you of their choices when it comes to their maternal health.
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