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Thread: Using ultrasounds to determine gestational age could result in baby's death page

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    shemdogg's Avatar
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    Using ultrasounds to determine gestational age could result in baby's death

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    Irritates the heck out of me when due dates are changed because of 2nd trimester ultrasounds. It's like changing a kid's graduation date from school based on how tall he is.

    First trimester ultrasound is VERY accurate at figuring out due dates because the structural features appear in a very consistent way and at a very consistent rate across all embryos. Second trimester ultrasound is way too dependent on genes and mom's diet.
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    I'm not sure I really get it. Doctors aren't generally going to actively try to prevent or stop labor if you're reasonably close to your due date.

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    What Lizch said... And I'm surprised there are many docs who base any guess at fetal age on a second trimester ultrasound rather than factoring in your period or an earlier ultrasound.

    I mean, what... Are all these women only appearing at the doc office during trimester 2?

    Either way it's not the ultrasound "resulting" in the baby's death like the article says. It's babies who run late, and are allowed to do so, who are more likely to die regardless. But there are plenty of women with accurate due dates who choose to wait for the baby even if late...

    Avocado, right -- I guess the risk here is from docs not inducing labor? Still surprises me considering the recent trend seems to be to induce on the due date, not letting them go way over, unless the parents really insist otherwise. So even if they misjudged by two weeks they'd still be within the normal plus or minus two week window...
    Last edited by Jenny; 09-28-2010 at 07:59 PM.
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    I didn't think they were generally inducing labor simply based on date calculations. They do start monitoring closely when going past term. But inducing is generally based on detecting distress, not calculated dates.

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    Oh Avocado, how I wish that were true!!! The induction rate at our local hospital is 40%. 40% of their babies are not in distress. Doctors have been routinely inducing at 37+ weeks for reasons that research does not back up, ranging from "big baby" (inducing does not give the pelvis its natural relaxing hormones that enable it to flex, so it's harder to push a baby through it....it would be better to wait for natural labor even if the baby gets a big bigger, so the pelvis can flex) to "low fluid" (tenuous evidence at best) to "why not? I'm not on call next week, so let's get the baby out now."

    I think the trend will reverse soon because induction is linked to higher c-section rates, and because inducing prior to 39 weeks greatly increases the risk that the baby will go straight to NICU instead of mom's arms
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    Yeah, judging by what many other new moms tell me, the local trend is to not let you go more than a couple days past your due date unless you insist -- due to the same concerns listed in the article.

    My OB won't induce early as Lizch describes above, but considering the trouble my 10 pound baby gave me, I wish they had!

    Avocado, seems like if they detect distress they'll send you straight in for a c-section... Not induce labor.

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    If anyone wants to know more about the topic of induced labor and hospital births, they should check out the documentary, "The Business of Being Born"
    Our system is so horrible it makes me want to cry. The U.S. has the highest infant mortality rate of the first world nations, it's awful and definitely NOT a coincidence. Doctors are NOT EVEN TAUGHT about a natural vaginal birth in medical school. There are more C-sections preformed around 5 in the afternoon and at 10 at night than any other time of day by a HUGE margin. That's only one piece of evidence that tells us the doctors really do say, "oh, look "It's getting close to dinner time and I will hurry the process up because I want to go home." or, "Oh, look at the time. I don't want to be here all night. Let's induce labor artificially because we can."

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    Quote Originally Posted by lizch View Post
    Oh Avocado, how I wish that were true!!! The induction rate at our local hospital is 40%. 40% of their babies are not in distress. Doctors have been routinely inducing at 37+ weeks for reasons that research does not back up, ranging from "big baby" ...
    But this is opposite to the OP article. Maybe delaying delivery is a Swedish thing. I really don't know.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jenny View Post
    Avocado, seems like if they detect distress they'll send you straight in for a c-section... Not induce labor.
    Depends on the situation. But yes, I didn't mean to specify induction vs C-section. I should have just said "deliver."

    Quote Originally Posted by ZoŽ View Post
    Doctors are NOT EVEN TAUGHT about a natural vaginal birth in medical school.
    I agree our infant mortality is ridiculous. But false statements don't help your cause.

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    Quote Originally Posted by avocado View Post

    I agree our infant mortality is ridiculous. But false statements don't help your cause.

    Whoops! I should have said something more like 'truly natural', not 'vaginal' *faceplam*

    The way I wrote it makes it a deceiving statement, so I apologize (and thanks for pointing that out). Yes, they are informed on the processes that take place of a vaginal birth (but not a truly natural one). What I meant to say, was that they are not taught about birth in a real life scenario where the mother is not in a hospital setting (and therefore they have no idea what midwifery is all about and write if off as dangerous). It is true that they do not witness a vaginal birth until residency and even so, it is still in a hospital setting where the mother is in a completely unnatural position, often given an epidural which slows down the contractions and messes everything up, etc. Just because the baby came out of the vagina does not qualify it as a natural vaginal birth to me but I should have defined my opinion more clearly.
    Last edited by ZoŽ; 09-28-2010 at 10:19 PM.

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