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Detailed Obstetrical Ultrasound

A detailed obstetrical ultrasound is performed during the second trimester of pregnancy (over 18 weeks). It examines your baby and the position of the placenta. It includes a head-to-toe examination of your baby’s abdominal organs and the heart, arms, hands, legs, feet, eyes, nose, lips and the brain anatomy.

We will take measurements to determine your baby’s growth and how many “weeks” since conception. Most pregnancies have a gestation period of 40 weeks. The amount of amniotic fluid and position of the placenta will also be evaluated.

For more information about this and other obstetrical ultrasound exams, please read the article What’s the Purpose of Obstetrical Ultrasounds?

We can give you the baby images from your obstetrical ultrasound exams on a complimentary USB, to share with family and friends. Please speak with one of our clinic receptionists for more details.


  • Take all prescribed medications as directed.
  • Please empty your bladder 90 minutes prior to your appointment, and then drink one litre of water within the next 30 minutes. Finish drinking water one hour before your exam and do not empty your bladder.
  • Please note: Drink water slowly to prevent abdominal discomfort.
  • If you are too uncomfortable, please relieve your bladder of a small amount of urine.
  • Once the test has begun, your sonographer will advise you if you can empty your bladder further or totally. We understand that a full bladder can be uncomfortable.
  • Please arrive 15 minutes before your appointment to allow enough time to check in with reception.
  • Bring photo identification and your provincial health card.
  • Wear comfortable clothes.


  • You will be asked to change into a gown.
  • A warm, non-scented, hypo-allergenic ultrasound gel will be applied to your stomach.
  • The sonographer will record the heartbeat and measure the length of your baby to correlate with your dates. The amount of amniotic fluid is assessed as well.
  • Your sonographer may have to apply some pressure to accurately measure you baby’s head, abdomen, and leg bone.
  • The length of your exam depends on how much your baby moves and its position.
  • Please advise the sonographer if you are having trouble holding your bladder at any time during the ultrasound.
  • If you need to move into a more comfortable position, please let the sonographer know.
  • Your sonographer may be concentrating on obtaining all of the necessary images, so they may show you images of your baby at the end of the exam.
  • You may bring your partner, family member or friend into the ultrasound room during the exam or at the end, whichever is your preference. Please ensure that young children are supervised during the exam and we can bring them in at the conclusion of your ultrasound.


We do our best to have our radiologists interpret the information and forward the results to your doctor by the next business day.


This exam is covered under the Alberta and Saskatchewan Health Care Plans.

You can expect to be at the clinic between 30-60 minutes, depending on your procedure(s) and barring any unforeseen delays.


Please ensure that you bring your requisition with you to your appointment.


40-60 minutes