Frequently Asked Questions
From the Precious Glimpse team, we answer the most frequent questions asked by our mothers
What is the difference between 2D/3D/4D & HD Ultrasound?
In ultrasound, a dimension is defined as the measure of length. We live in a 3D (D stands for dimensional) world with the 4th dimension as time. By using multiple dimensions in ultrasound, we can find the width, depth and height of an object (in this case, your baby!). Below is a short summary of each dimensions and how ultrasound takes advantage of it.
2D ultrasounds are the traditional “black and white” images typically seen and represent a flat cross section of your baby. These images allow you to see through the baby and their organs and skeletal system can be visualized. This is very useful for obtaining growth measurement, heart rate and detecting abnormalities.
3D ultrasound uses multiple 2D image slices to create the “surface” of the baby; this is the third dimension. This allows you to see the baby from the outer skin surface instead of bones.
When the 3D image is combined with time (fourth dimension) this will show live 4D movement of the baby and allows you to view the baby in real life motion as they are occurring in the womb. Facial expressions such as a yawn or sucking the thumb or toe can be seen.
High Definition (HD) is the latest technology in rendering surfaces and is unlike anything you’ve ever seen. Compared to the monochrome surface of the 3D images, HD images from our state of the art technology GE Voluson shows more depth and detail with almost real life-like baby images with no additional cost.
When is the best time to have the 3D/4D/HD scan?
The recommended period for the 3D/4D and HD scan is in the third trimester between 26 weeks to 32 weeks. This is when your baby begins to build on the most weight and their facial details become more fuller, and the images may appear more defined. If your baby is measuring bigger in terms of size, or if you have an anterior placenta, we recommend coming earlier from 30 weeks and under where your baby has more room to move around. However, you are welcome to book this scan anytime as you wish.
Why is it suggested to have a scan before 32 weeks? Can I still get it done after?
It can vary between different women, however, after 32 weeks the baby is bigger and tends to push further into the womb. This will mean that your baby will begin to have less room as they become engaged resulting in limited visibility due to obstruction from body tissue from limited space. However, you are still welcome to book whenever you wish as these scans still make great bonding sessions to see your baby again.
Can Precious Glimpse guarantee perfect clear images?
We are absolutely passionate in what we do and our team of talented technicians will always endeavour to get the best possible images for you on the day. However, we are unable to guarantee perfect images as it is dependent on many factors that we cannot have any control over. This includes your baby’s position, placental location, amount of amniotic fluid (space) and mother’s body type which can all affect the result of the image. We do kindly ask when booking these scans to always prepare for setbacks and to cherish the uniqueness of your baby as some babies simply love their hand, feet or to simply hug the placenta.
What can I do to increase my chance of getting really good 3D/HD images?
Firstly, we recommend to book within our recommended optimal period between 26 to 32 weeks and preferably when your baby is in a head down position (not breech or transverse). If your baby is measuring bigger or if you have an anterior placenta we recommend to book from 30 weeks and under.
We then recommend keeping yourself well hydrated (2-3 litres of water) daily for at least 1-2 week before your appointment to improve the amniotic fluid volume in the womb. The amniotic fluid is the space that you see around your baby. Many times, mums think it’s a full bladder that creates clear 3D/HD images but in fact it’s actually the fluid in the womb around your baby’ face providing better image results. The more space around your baby’s face the clearer the image. This means that the baby has more space to move with less obstruction from body tissue and limbs. If your baby is right up against the placenta or has arms covering the ultrasound waves have to travel through these thicker layers to obtain the images and this can create a cloudy appearance in the pictures.
Can I combine my medical ultrasound with a 3D/4D/HD ultrasound?
Our 3D/4D/HD scan or any elective scans cannot replace your important routine medical ultrasounds referred by your doctor/midwife. During your medical scan our sonographer spends the whole session to properly measure and screen for any fetal anomalies. This can only be done by 2D ultrasound to visualize your baby’s internal organs. We understand many mum-to-be travel a fair distance to reach our clinic and hence, you can extend any medical ultrasound session (recommend 20 weeks+) to include one elective scan.
Example: You can have a Morphology ultrasound ($270) with a Reassurance Plus ($149) as an add-on.
For a Growth scan you can add on the Precious Gold ($199) or Diamond ($279). These add on packages will include 3D/4D/HD imaging, print outs, short video clips as well as extending your session. This will allow our sonographer to have enough time to do both the medical and 3D/HD scan for your baby.
What is a Reassurance scan? Can I have this scan instead of my routine medical pregnancy scan?
Unfortunately the answer is no, the Reassurance scans are lovely scans to book anytime you wish to see your baby without a doctor’s referral. These scans cannot replace your important routine medical pregnancy scans as no measurement or report are given for these scans. Our technician won’t be performing any assessment of your baby’s health or measurements during the Reassurance scan as seen during your medical scan with a sonographer.
During the Reassurance scan, our technician takes pictures of your baby for your enjoyment and shows you your baby’s movement, heartbeat and position only. They are great scans when you need a peace of mind, to alleviate stress, baby bonding or simply because you want an update or sneak peek of what the baby is up to.
Can I purchase a gift certificate?
We offer both an e-voucher and a physical gift certificate that can be picked up at our clinic.
If you would like to purchase a voucher, please contact our reception at (03) 9021 0018 and we can help arrange a gift certificate.
Why do I need a full bladder?
A full bladder helps place bub in a fixed position, so it helps when mothers come in with a full bladder. In most cases, we will ask our mothers to empty their bladder once we find that bub needs to be in a better position.
How do I prepare for my ultrasound scan?
You can prepare by drinking plenty of water leading up to your appointment, double checking the packages and add-ons you have selected and to arrive early to fill out paperwork.
We recommend wearing comfortable clothes to ensure you are feeling relaxed for the duration of the scan.
If you are attending a medical scan, we suggest bringing your referral, Medicare and EFTPOS card so we can claim the Medicare rebate. If you only have a digital copy, please email your referral to firstname.lastname@example.org. During COVID lockdown, please read our COVID safety policy before arriving.
Is ultrasound harmful?
Studies have shown that ultrasounds are not harmful to the mother or baby and have an excellent safety record. They don’t have the same risk as x-rays which use ionising radiation. 3D/4D/HDLive screening utilises low-frequency sound waves to look inside the body. A probe is placed onto the mother’s belly which emits sound waves into the body, listens to the returning echo generating an image.
Are the elective services covered by Medicare or other health insurance?
Our elective services such as the 3D/HD, Reassurance and Gender scan are designed for our mothers to bond with their bubs. They are not intended to diagnose or act as a replacement for your important medical ultrasounds. At this point in time, Medicare does not recognise these types of scans which means there are no rebates available.
Medicare rebate is only available for our medical scans only.
Are the gender scans 100% accurate? When is the earliest I can come in?
Whilst our technician is highly skilled, we can never guarantee the determination is 100%. Our accuracy rate is at least 99% with an excellent track record. Our technicians take the utmost care and time while completing gender determination and confirmation requires at least two different angles.
If our technicians feel uncertain due to the baby’s position they will not reveal the gender to you and will offer a rescan.
What if you can’t capture anything?
We capture images using the best available technology and with our talented experienced staff. In some cases, it all depends on what bub really wants to show us. Sometimes they are camera shy, sometimes they put on a beautiful show. If we could ask our bubs to position themselves, wave, and smile at the camera, believe us, we would!
In cases where we are unable to capture images to our standards, you will be asked to empty your bladder, walk up and down the stairs, drink cold water or eat some sweets. It is up to our technician’s discretion for a rescan that depends on whether there is a chance of potentially capturing better images than what was taken on the day.
Can having a high BMI affect the image quality?
BMI is the body mass index, unfortunately having a high BMI can affect the image quality.
If you are overweight, this will mean that there is more body tissue and layers for the sound waves to travel through as the baby is further away from the transducer probe. Ultrasound sends sound waves through your womb; these waves bounce off your baby and the receiving echoes are turned into an image on the screen.
This increased distance between the transducer and baby will distort the beam as the body tissues absorb these soundwaves as a result the images will become less clear with a fuzzy appearance.
Our experienced technician may ask you to turn to your side or change your position to minimise the beam distortion. We have invested in the latest state of the art technology and continue to upgrade our system yearly to try to overcome this limiting factor. There is only so much technology can do, please prepare that your images may not appear as detailed if this is the case. However, our technicians will always endeavour to do their best.
Can an anterior placenta affect the image quality?
An anterior placenta means it is located at the front of the womb. This can mean that it is located right in front of your baby’s face and can add extra layers and obstruction for us to capture clear images of your baby.
Ultrasound creates the images by sending sound waves through your womb, these waves bounce off your baby and the receiving echoes are turned into an image. An anterior placenta adds extra layers and distance between your baby and the probe which can result in a less detailed image. Also sometimes babies just love to snuggle right into the placenta which can also make it challenging to get a fuller image of your baby’s face.
We recommend if you have an anterior placenta that you book your 3D/HD scan earlier from 30 weeks and under so that your baby has more room. Our technician may ask you to turn to your side or to move around to encourage your baby to change their position. When booking these scans we kindly ask you to prepare for these setbacks that can occur and to cherish the uniqueness of your baby.
I have twins, what is the recommended period to come in for a 3D/4D/HDLive scan?
Congratulations! Twins are always fun to see at Precious Glimpse. We recommend you come earlier between 24 – 26 weeks instead of the recommended 28-32 week, as twins take up so much space in your womb that at later weeks, there will be no room left for them to move. If this happens, the likelihood of them in a difficult capture-moment position is high.
I am bleeding and in need of emergency help!
Precious Glimpse strongly advised all mothers who are experiencing bleeding, or any emergency assisted query to go to your nearest hospital right away.
My partner is coming, can we wait?
Unfortunately, we can only wait for a few minutes before commencing the scan, we want to ensure our technician has adequate time to provide you with the best images and experience possible. However, our receptionist can bring your partner to our room if you wish.
I am experiencing discomfort while you are scanning me.
If you feel uncomfortable in any way, please let us know straight away and we will stop the scan immediately. Your safety is our upmost priority during the scan. We may stop the services all together depending on the length of time and the service.
Can I take videos and facetime my family?
Yes, we are more than happy for you to shares these moments. Please let your scanning technician know first.
Can you please send me the medical report in my email?
Our medical reports are best interpreted by your general practitioner/midwife or other health specialist. By sending reports directly to the mother, we may create unnecessary stress to an otherwise healthy pregnancy. Therefore, all medical reports are sent directly to your health professionals.
We take priority in sending medical reports to your health professionals in a timely manner, but sometimes there could be issues with reports being received. We urge all of our mothers to contact your health professional at least a day prior to your consultation to ensure they receive it. In the case where they have not yet received it, give us a call or email and we will send it again with a follow-up call to confirm they have received the report on their end.
I have issues with accessing my Tricefy
Sometimes, we experience intermittent internet issues that may stop the upload process of your files. We expect all the images to be sent by the end of the business day.
I didn’t receive my Tricefy link
Double check your packages and add-ons to see if you Tricefy is part of the services, if yes, please call us right away.
My GP have not received my report
It’s Precious Glimpse priority to send reports directly to your referrer, we send reports using e-fax, but to be sure. We also provide a courtesy call to ensure they have received them. If for any reason they still haven’t received them, please call us and we will send again.
My heart recording bear’s heart stop working
The heart recorders have demo batteries supplied by our manufacturer, we suggest to change those batteries to fresh ones. Depending on use, batteries may deplete after 2 months of continuous use. We strongly suggest to have a back-up heart recording file before changing batteries.
For any COVID related questions, please visit our blog here.
We have other interesting blogs for our mothers who likes to know more about ultrasound or pregnancy here.