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    Baby’s first test. Grade?

    Today was a very interesting baby development day: we had the first part our NT screening test… and found out we have a little troublemaker growing in my belly (more on this in a minute).

    The NT test, for you non-baby speak types, stands short for “nuchal translucency” test. Although it doesn’t pinpoint so, this test helps determine a baby’s risk for having chromosomal abnormalities, such as Down syndrome. The NT test measures the space in the tissue of the baby’s back. The larger the space (over a given measure), the more likely it is that the developing baby has an abnormality.

    The clinic that performed the procedure today was very interesting: it was a swanky place (as far as clinics go) with modern design, neat lighting and cool décor — very much what you would see on a TV show.

    Prior to arriving arriving you are asked to drink 1/4L water within half an hour of the exam. A full-ish bladder helps push up your uterus so the scan is easier. I came prepared, I knew this was important. However, it didn’t help that we got called in 30 minutes late. By then, believe me, my bladder was more than full.

    When we were finally called in, we walked into our examining room and the nurse pointed to the chairs for S to sit, and pointed to my bed. Then she walked away. I took off my shoes and started to look around for the sheet I’m typically issued to wear. No sheet. Then I noticed… no stir-ups. This was the first appointment I’ve had in what has now been 4 months of procedures that I haven’t had to drop my pants for each doctor I see. I’m growing up!!!!
    Upon lying down I immediately saw MY screen. Yep – there was a monitor mounted up on the ceiling just for my benefit. The nurse/doc had their own attached with the machine, but I could also watch without having to contort myself in interesting pretzel shapes.

    The ultrasound itself was probably one of the coolest we’ll probably go through: the machines are super sensitive and you could see so much. Unlike our last appointment, no longer were we trying to decipher a blurry-static-y shape from another blurry-static-y shape. It was all right there. We heard the heart and we watched the baby move. It actually moved a little too much, and of course in none of the ways that the technician wanted it to move. Hence the trouble-maker bit. The nurse decided to “jiggle” the baby into moving. What this entailed was her bouncing the u/s wand up and down my belly. It made my giggle… and want to pee even worse. Eventually we got the measurements we needed though. Baby R’s space measured at 1.7mm which is in normal range for its development age.

    Wanna see some pictures?

    Here it is with the heart scan. It beats at a good 164 beats per minute. We got to hear it too which was neat.


    There’s a little wave!


    Oh… and here’s the cool part: completely unexpected, the nurse busted out a 3d picture

    It’s playing peek-a-boo.


    I think it has a really cute head and a totally cute little nose.


    After the ultrasound came more blood-work which is the second part of the screening test. The blood-work completes the overall picture of the diagnosis.

    Here’s where things get weird. Outside of us knowing the NT measurement we know nothing else. We won’t get our results until our next round of blood-work…. in another month! This is the part that makes me upset. Some people seem to find out their results if not the day of, within a week or two of the screening. We won’t have a genetic counselor call us – the results will be sent to the OB… but not until the second round of the blood work is complete. In another month I’ll be almost 17 weeks. If there are issues and we need to plan for more concrete CVS or Amniocentesis I just want to make sure we’ll have time.

    I think above all else I’m upset because I’m ready to relax and enjoy this pregnancy. I don’t want to have to worry about tests, the next stage of things to overcome, and what if’s. At this rate my pregnancy will be over, our baby will be here and I feel like I would have missed it 🙁

    3 responses to “Baby’s first test. Grade?”

    1. Alison (MyABCLife) says:

      Oh Ava – that is just amazing!! You really can see the BABY now!!

    2. alibee says:

      That is so weird and so cool!

      I hope that they do that to me 😀

    3. love22 says:

      Oh, Ava, That is so great and what great pictures. 🙂

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