During pregnancy you’ll be able to have an ultrasound scan at several different stages. The earliest pregnancy scan is the viability scan, which has several purposes.
The viability scan is usually carried out at 6 to 10 weeks. It’s a vaginal scan, which means the transducer probe is inserted internally. This is necessary because at this early stage of the pregnancy, an abdominal ultrasound wouldn’t be powerful enough to detect the tiny foetus inside the uterus. A vaginal ultrasound works better at this stage because the probe is closer to the foetus and therefore picks up sound waves more effectively.
The viability scan is sometimes called the dating scan, although it has other functions in addition to estimating the baby’s due date. The main reasons to have a viability scan are:
The earlier a viability scan is performed, the more accurate the due date prediction will be. There are two reasons for this. One is that the foetus grows more rapidly early in gestation, so there are large size differences from week to week. The second reason is that foetal size is more variable later in the pregnancy. As the unborn baby develops, genetics and other factors begin to play a role in its size, which makes the due date harder to predict.
If an ultrasound is performed during the first 12 weeks of a pregnancy, it can predict a due date that’s accurate to within 3 to 5 days. For the most accurate due date prediction, the best time to have the viability scan is between 8 and 11 weeks. This is because foetal growth is fastest at this stage of pregnancy, so the size of the foetus best indicates the age.
A viability scan isn’t essential, but it is a good idea to have one, because it’s the best way to estimate the baby’s due date. This is especially true if your periods are irregular, or if you don’t know the first day of your last period, as these situations make using a pregnancy calculator less accurate. Having a viability scan is important in these cases to confirm the pregnancy as well as to estimate the due date.
At The Birth Company we understand that parents-to-be don’t always have the time to schedule viability ultrasound scans in advance! To help you get your London ultrasound scan ASAP, we offer next-day appointments, and we’re open every day of the week.
' Professional and reassuring 'Helen Campbell
The sonographer was ready as soon as I arrived, and she was extremely calming, personable and professional. The scan and blood test where efficient without feeling rushed and all very easy. These appointments can feel uneasy and make you feel anxious but I felt reassured and in professional hands the whole time
I saw Kate throughout my first pregnancy and am now doing so again with my second. She is absolutely amazing, she explains everything really clearly, and has answered all sorts of bizarre questions and worries I have had. On top of being clinically excellent she is also just the loveliest person and always a pleasure to see.Sarah Elliott
We had the harmony test with the Birth Company and had a reassurance scan with sonographer Kirsty McGarry who was absolutely lovely and really put our minds at rest. We had been scared by our NHS dating scan and left feeling like there was something wrong. We explained the situation and was treated very professionally and with good care. Also speedy appointments also as I had phone in the morning and got an appointment by afternoon. So thankful.Ashley and Tom
Really friendly, efficient service. Great experience overall. Had the Panorama. My appointment was with Kate who was absolutely fantastic. The results came really quickly. Have a comparison with private healthcare elsewhere and must say that The Birth Company was just how I would like to be treated when I pay for medical services - attentively, calmly, friendly, in a pleasant environment that doesn't look like hospital. Top marks!Anna
' Efficient, friendly and always on hand to provide last minute appointments 'Anna s
The Birth Company has been excellent, providing timely scans and blood tests during my IVF treatment abroad. Staff are always friendly and extremely efficient. I would highly recommend coming here.
' Professional and friendly 'Lyndsey Dilla
When I first contacted the Birth Company I spoke to Danielle. She was fantastic. She went above & beyond to put me at easy & make the journey from Kent as stress free as possible. Every staff member that myself and my husband have come into contact with have been approachable, professional and friendly. Kate scanned me the first time and put me completely at easy. Lisa on reception is professional and very approachable. Highly recommended
' Highly recommended 'Emelie
Donald was so lovely! I was so nervous as I have a bad history and he was super quick and confirmed my baby's heartbeat as quickly as he could. He spent time showing me the baby and the anatomy and it was the best money I have ever spent! The reception girls were lovely too - considering they deal with babies day in day out they were super excited for me! Thank you so much one and all! If only I lived in London and could have all my scans with you!
Great Portland Street