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Old 04-07-2012, 10:44 AM   #17
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Re: Are sonograms really safe??

Originally Posted by SeaChellsRun View Post
This is suspicious to me. There's barely any research done on these machine used frequently on pregnant women? Often in the medical industry when there's things like this it's not researched because they know the outcome. It's also said here in the US that cell phones and microwaves are generally harmless (although a little info has been coming out about cells). In other countries people are told that yes, cell phones caused your brain tumor. That's unheard of here.

Some of the harm of u/s is actually due to the unnecessary stress it can cause. I've seen often even here on DS, women get an u/s, a call on friday saying that there's something not quite right and they need another one. Of course then you're stressed out until your next appt and can be for nothing.

"Now, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is funding a project that aims to temporarily sterilize men by blasting their scrotums with ultrasound. The burst of ultrasound energy, it turns out, disrupts the normal biological function of the testes, making the man infertile for six months." (Yet it's totally safe for a baby! Hm...)

"Ultrasound is loud. It no doubt causes tissue disruption and damage in a fetus, and it certainly creates stress and shock for the baby."

Just because an anchor quoted Natural News does not make this true. The article that this is taken from is on the Natural News website. There are no scientific references and this is basically an op ed piece. While some might find it compelling, it drives me batty when Natural News posts something as fact and then uses itself as a main reference. It goes in circles with one NN piece referencing another and so on until sometimes their posts wind up in a great bit reference circle.

More sites with info...

Some of these are the also referenced in the NN article above. Again, they are mostly newspaper (and tabloid) articles. The note about attempting to use ultrasound as birth control does not mean that ultrasound isn't safe for babies. Morphine is used every day for pain. Should we stop its use for pain because it is possible to give a person an overdose and kill them? An article that an organization is researching the possibility of using a "blast" of ultrasound for contraception does not in any way make prenatal ultrasound or other diagnostic ultrasound unsafe. The midwifery article is quite old and really doesn't say much. It talks about using ultrasound for screening purposes and says that the ultrasound doesn't change the prenatal outcome. Well, it woudn't. It is used to screen for abnormalities. It is a diagnostic tool, not a therapeutic tool. Knowing through ultrasound that a baby has spina bifida won't cure the condition, but it sure means that the doctors will be prepared once baby arrives. That article also said that there was no difference in prenatal morbidity and mortabilty among those with routine ultrasound and those without - seems to me that that means that the study (which by the way is not referenced so there is no way to actually look at it) shows that they aren't harmful.

I haven't been able to find the info on this again but I recall reading that u/s are not routinely checked and no guidelines and can be giving on much higher dose than it's supposed to or is needed.

"But scientists say prolonged and frequent use of ultrasound could be harmful after it emerged that it causes brain abnormalities in the developing foetuses of pregnant mice.

An American research team emphasises that the benefits of ultrasound for diagnosing problems in pregnancy still outweigh these potential risks (wait a second! Risks? Thought it was safe?? Hm...), which have yet to be confirmed in human studies Ah... It's safe because the risks that have been found haven't been confirmed.). But even though the study, by Dr Pasko Rakic at the Yale School of Medicine, used rodents, his team says it raises concerns about the non-medical use of ultrasound, where low intensity waves are used to take images of the unborn child."

Well DD is up crying with a nightmare or something or other. Pretty sure I have some more info so I'll be back

Anyway, as another posted mentioned, it is generally impossible to prove something safe. All that can be done is continually show that there isn't harm. We take a risk in everything we do. Even eating spinach can have deadly outcomes even though spinach is generally considered safe and in fact healthy. I personally had several ultrasounds with each of my pregnancies. However, they were all for medical/screening/diagnostic purposes. I did not find out gender for any of my babies and never did 4d ultrasounds or anything like that. I chose ultrasound over the AFP/triple screen because I knew that the lab screening would cause me stress while a diagnostic ultrasound would give me information and not just risk.

To the OP, I would not let op ed pieces like Natural News worry you if at all possible. I know that we all question everything we do during pregnancy. However, decades of screening/diagnosic ultrasounds have been considered safe and helpful to outcomes. In my personal opinion, I believe that any small potential (because we don't even know if it's a true risk) risk is outweighed by the potential good that can come from knowing before delivery if baby is going to need extra help.

Knowing that baby had spina bifida might make someone rule out an unassisted homebirth where baby's prognosis would be poor and instead have them deliver at a hospital equipped to care for baby's immediate healthcare needs.
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