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All pregnant women in England are offered an ultrasound scan at around 8 to 14 weeks of pregnancy. This is called the dating scan. It's used to see how far along in your pregnancy you are and check your baby's development.
Your midwife or doctor will book you a dating scan appointment. It will usually take place at your local hospital ultrasound department.
The person performing the scan is called a sonographer. You may need to have a full bladder for this scan, as this makes the ultrasound image clearer. You can ask your midwife or doctor before the scan if this is the case.
Find out more about what happens during a pregnancy ultrasound scan. Some abnormalities may also be detected at this scan, such as neural tube defects spina bifida is a type of neural tube defect.
Screening for Down's syndrome will happen at the dating scan if:.
The screening test for Down's syndrome used at this stage of pregnancy is called the "combined test". It involves a blood test and measuring the fluid at the back of the baby's neck nuchal translucency with an ultrasound scan. This is sometimes called a nuchal translucency scan.
The nuchal translucency measurement can be taken during the dating scan. Find out more about the combined screening test for Down's syndrome.
You won't be offered the combined screening test if your dating scan happens after 14 weeks. Instead, you will be offered another blood test between 14 and 20 weeks of pregnancy to screen for the risk of Down's syndrome.
This test is not quite as accurate as the combined test. Skip to main content.
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A pregnancy can be seen from as early as 6 weeks from the first day of your last period (LMP) and not the date of conception. If you have had any bleeding or.