Midwife Marde Swan
Midwife B Mid (Hons.)
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Frequently Asked Questions
Dear Parents, Family and friends.
Q1. What is a Boutique Antenatal Ultrasound
I perform an Ultrasound scan during all my Midwifery Antenatal Consultations.
I offer elective 2D, 3D & 4D Antenatal ultrasounds to provide a positive bonding experience for the parents with their unborn baby. Realistic surface images provide a connection between the parents and baby that can be beneficial to the whole family. However, I don’t claim that ultrasounds performed in this context are intended to assess your baby for abnormalities*
Any concerns will be addressed in a Midwifery capacity and referred to a specialist as deemed appropriate.
*A routine ultrasound examination should have already been performed to assess the gestational age of your baby and to evaluate for fetal anomalies, as well as the basic components of fetal anatomy recommended for screening
Q2. What is the difference between a 2D,3D and 4D Ultrasound?
2D Scans are the basic 2 dimensional images obtained at standard Antenatal scans. It’s usually only gray and white images. Baby’s anatomy will be distinguishable and pointed out during the consultation. Fetal movements will be visible and the Fetal Heart Rate will also be measured at this stage. At times fairly clear images are obtained with the opportunity to glimpse some of your little one’s features. Examples of 2D Images
3D scans show still pictures of your baby in three dimensions. These require adequate presence of amniotic fluid and as little as possible obtrusions to obtain good images. For this reason there is a ‘sweet spot’ (between 20 and 28 weeks) that has proven to render better images. We’ll need baby to lie in such a way to view facial images – something we have little control over. examples if 3D Images
4D scans show moving 3D images of your baby, with time being the fourth dimension.Examples of 4D Videos
Both 3D and 4D Scanning require a longer consultation and some time to edit and save to a portable device.
Q3. Are Ultrasounds safe and are there any risks to me, or my baby?
Extensive studies for over 30 years have found that ultrasound has not been shown to cause any harm to mother or baby. Routine scanning of all pregnancies is now normal throughout Australia. In 3D/4D scanning exactly the same type and intensity of ultrasound is used as with conventional 2D scanning.
This practice follows the ALARA-principle: standing for “As Low as Reasonably Achievable”.
Q4. What is the optimal time to have my Boutique Ultrasound?
Lovely images of your baby can be obtained anytime from 16 weeks of pregnancy.
The best images are obtained between 16-36 weeks gestation, with a ‘Sweet-spot’ between 22-28 weeks.
There is however no guarantees of good images at any stage. If it happens that the baby’s position and/or maternal anatomy hinder clear views, a repeat scan will be offered.
Q5. What could I do to improve images during my scan, and I need a full bladder?
A well hydrated mother has ample, clear amniotic fluid – This is what is necessary for clear images.
You will need to drink at least 1 liter of water each day, starting 10 days before your booked appointment.
A full Bladder is not nescessary for scans beyond 16 weeks of pregnancy.
Q6. How long does the 3/4D Ultrasound take?
A midwife consultation last between 45-60 minutes. Allow extra time to obtain optimal images and editing where necessary.
Q7. Are beautiful pictures of my baby guaranteed?
Not always. I endeavor to give parents the best possible experience. However, if the baby is persistently looking face down, i.e. towards your spine or are already engaged into your pelvis, it may be difficult to see the baby's face. Even if baby lies in a perfect pose, obstructive features like the placenta, cord, arms and hands may obscure the view – casting shadows over that area being scanned.
Should the circumstances lead to poor imaging, a repeat scan on another day (at no extra charge) may succeed if baby has turned to a more favorable position.
Q8. Who may sit in on the consultation?
I encourage mothers to invite family members/friends to attend the Boutique Ultrasound session. This is a joyous and wonderful experience, one that can be shared with your family and loved ones.
Due to Covid-19 restrictions, a maximum of 3 Visitors (Incl. the Mother) are allowed during the consult.
Q9. Are you able to view the gender of the baby?
Yes, in most cases I’m able to indicate the gender of the baby. Position of the baby, gestation and other factors that could obscure the view, should be taken into account. Gender determination is most acurately seen from 20 weeks onwards, prior to this it is based on the subjective interpretation of the scanner.
Please advise me in advance if you wish to not know the gender of your baby.
Q10. Is the Boutique Ultrasound covered by Medicare?
Medicare covers only three 2D Ante-Natal Ultrasound scans during each pregnancy. My Consultations are covered as a Bulk Bill Medicare Claim, but not the captured images on Ultrasound. Cost of images are determined by the Package selected.
During my Consultations I include a standard 10 minute 2D Boutique scan to determine the minimum of a Fetal Heart Rate. This scan is however not intended for diagnostic purposes.
Q11. Could I purchase a Boutique Ultrasound Voucher for a Mother-to-be?
Absolutely! This is a very special gift-idea for parents who’ll cherish every moment and keepsakes obtained from this experience.
The gift voucher could be combined with a special occasion or used as a stand-alone private consultation. Choose from the list of Packages and Fees, and Contact me for ideas and a booking.
Q12. What if I decide against having an Ultrasound during my Midwife consultation?
Should a Mother elect against an Ultrasound, her wishes will be respected and I’ll continue to render a quality Midwifery consultation, appropriate to gestation. The consultation will be concluded with a physical examination and auscultation of her Baby’s Fetal Heart Rate in line with Queensland Clinical Guidelines.
Q13. Where are consultations performed?
I offer services either in my practice for Antenatal Care, or at home for Postnatal Consultations
a. In-Practice Consultations: Cairns, Mount Sheridan – Monday to Saturday. (The address will be confirmed upon booking)
b. Home Consultations – Monday to Saturday.
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