Your obstetrician may refer you for a scan in your third trimester for a variety of reasons:

• Growth and well-being of the baby
• Fluid loss
• Twins/multiple pregnancy
• Diabetic/Gestational Diabetes
• History of small or large baby
• Low lying placenta
• Pain or decreased fetal movement
• High blood pressure

The third trimester ultrasound can give necessary information to your obstetrician by the use of Doppler assessment by assessing fetal biophysical profile and using clinical history and examination. The amount of oxygen the fetus is gaining via placenta can be calculated by fetal biophysical profiling. The tone, baby’s heart rate, amniotic fluid volume, and movement will be assessed through this test. Any placental inefficiency will be detected by scanning the blood flow in the main artery passing through the baby’s brain. Fetal size, amount of amniotic fluid, placental position and blood flow patterns in the cord and ductus venosus (liver vein) can also be estimated.

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