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Anyone NOT had an NT scan? What happened?

(59 Posts)
TobyLerone Fri 28-Jun-13 14:55:30

I missed my NT scan appointment yesterday. It was my own fault. I got the time wrong.

Anyway, long story short, the hospital now aren't sure whether or not they can fit me in before the 14-week deadline. It needs to be done in the next week, and I won't know until Tuesday at the earliest whether or not they can do it.

I have spoken to my midwife and she said that if the worst comes to the worst, they'll scan me anyway (they wanted to check my fibroids at the same time) but just not be able to measure NT. Then they'll give me '2nd trimester blood tests' to check for DS etc.

I'm quite concerned about not having the scan done. There's nowhere local which does them privately. Anyone else been as stupid as me been in this situation?

CookMySocks Fri 28-Jun-13 15:11:43

I haven't been in your situation, but I did decline the NT scan for DD. She's absolutely fine. Would you terminate if there was a high risk of Downs? If so and you're absolutely certain, then explain this and push for a scan within the time limit so you can get it done as early as possible. But if not, just don't worry! Not having the scan won't make problems any more likely. And don't be pushed into invasive tests later on if you don't want them, they carry their own risks.

TobyLerone Fri 28-Jun-13 15:17:26

I think we probably would terminate if DS was actually diagnosed, so I really need the combined test results in order to make the decision to have the invasive tests.

I have explained to the hospital the fact that there is a deadline, but there is apparently nothing they can do to help due to their bookings system being down until next week hmm

Thanks, though. I will definitely push for one next week, even if I have to go to another hospital.

valiumredhead Fri 28-Jun-13 15:28:55

I didn't want one so I never had it -sorry unhelpful post!

DIYandEatCake Fri 28-Jun-13 15:40:19

When I had dd in 2011 our hospital didn't do nt scans (they do now, was offered one for dd), just offered the 2nd trimester blood tests your midwife mentioned. So if it comes to it they're tests used til very recently.

HaPPy8 Fri 28-Jun-13 15:59:46

I think you are unlikely to be fitted in to be honest if you missed the first appointment, the nhs isn't very forgiving where missed appointments are concerned. If you really want it I would look in to having it privately and accept that you will have to travel for it. You only have a short time to find an appointment so I wouldn't rely on the NHS.

galwaygirl Fri 28-Jun-13 16:07:01

Hi, your title is a bit confusing - not sure you're looking for answers like mine...
Didn't have scan or bloods with either DC, had anomaly scans in case of any issues babies would need help with at birth. Both babies perfectly healthy so far.
Sounds like you will need to go privately if you really want the scan.

littleducks Fri 28-Jun-13 16:07:18

I was offered another check (bloods combined or something) which I declined so can't offer much info on it. Could be done up to about 15 weeks

weakestlink Fri 28-Jun-13 16:08:39

I was too late for it so didn't have it for this pregnancy. I had the blood tests and they looked for soft markers and odds were very good so said I need not worry. Having said that I would not terminate so irrelevant really...
I think if you really want to know then you're going to have to book a private one before its too late.

littlemonkey2013 Fri 28-Jun-13 16:32:33

where i live they dont offer a NT so they do triple blood testing instead. some areas do triple and some do quadruple tests. it still gives you odds for the baby having downs so you can choose whether or not to have further testing.

so i would say dont worry too much and have the other tests

TobyLerone Fri 28-Jun-13 19:23:54

That's basically what I was after, I think. Info on what the alternative is. Triple/quadruple tests sounds like it.

Thank you smile

Excited85 Fri 28-Jun-13 19:30:28

It's just a normal blood test that they use to check for Downs etc. I had to have that as baby was wrong way around for scan and wouldn't move so they couldn't do nuchal measurements etc. So I wouldn't worry, a lot of people are in the same situation for various reasons, just like a previous poster suggested this can be normal protocol in some areas.

TripleRock Fri 28-Jun-13 19:43:15

I missed out on NT. First scan appointment proved too early for it to be taken and then they couldn't fit me in until it was after the window.

I had the quadruple blood test instead which gave me a 'low risk' result.

I paid for a private NT scan and bloods with my first pregnancy. It was done at the same NHS hospital just the scan was done by a consultant ob/gyn not a sonographer and it took place in the evening. Cost about £150 3 years ago.

Wasn't bothered this time as we'd already decided we would decline any intrusive diagnostic tests so no point.

fuckwittery Fri 28-Jun-13 19:51:02

Find out if they do the blood tests as well from your midwife. In my area, this is my third pregancy and the only time I've been offered the NT scan, first two pregnancies were a risk on blood levels only, if above a certain risk on the bloods I think you were then offered an NT or amniocentisis.

This time I have declined the tests as we would prefer not to know, but I think you should call everyday if you really want them done, but check with your MW you are also having the triple or quadruple blood test, as they need to be done by a certain time as well.

TobyLerone Fri 28-Jun-13 19:55:34

Their new computer system will not be live until Tuesday and there is apparently nothing they can tell me until then. Even my MW said they can't tell her either.

They definitely do the blood tests, because my MW said that's what they'll do if they can't do the scan. I just didn't know what it was called, and whether it's a diagnostic test or a screening test.

TobyLerone Fri 28-Jun-13 19:56:00

Thanks all, by the way smile

Theas18 Fri 28-Jun-13 20:02:12

You still get the bloods I assume?

Just remember that many of us old timers had our babies years before NT came in. Your age related risk I assume isn't high? ( about 1in 66 at age 40 less below, but I believe that's conceptions, many of which will miscarry early).

If you are older , or very paranoid pay for a scan given you would terminate . Sorry you missed your appointment , but you can't really expect the nhs to effectively pay again for your slot and try to over fill already full clinics ....or am I just being harsh?

PoppyAmex Fri 28-Jun-13 20:05:38

I didn't miss mine, but due to the baby's position it wasn't possible to measure the nuchal fold; they offered blood tests.

I just booked a private scan for the next day.

Gobbolinothewitchscat Fri 28-Jun-13 20:17:35

toby - I fell of our antenatal thread as was on hols ad feeling grim. humpty kindly pmed me to check I was ok and mentioned re your scan. sad. I was actually just going to post on the antenatal thread but will do so here.

My NHS scan with DS was very late and he was in an awkward position. The sonographer wasn't very nice and we didn't realise we could ask to get up and walk around etc and have another go. She just said we would need the blood test.

I spoke to DH's aunty who is a GP and she recommended getting it done privately due to the risk of a false positive with the bloods.

So, we went to babybond and they were fab. Not sure where you are - but they're all over the country. It is expensive but I would strongly recommend booking in with them now. If you get any joy with the hospital, you can cancel. But at least you have an appointment. That should hopefully make dealing with the hospital slightly less stressful.

Separately, do you have a good GP? Mine is excellent and a very good advocate. It could be if you go to the GP, they'll fight your corner too. When I was at babybond, they thought they could see a fibroid. I went to my GP and she referred me for a scan the next day - it can be done! All was fine and it was just up to babybond being very cautious.

If you still want to take things further, then you can try and claim back the cost of the scan from the NHS. I'm sure you've done this but make sure you get the receptionist woman's full name. I would also ask to speak to her manager now too.

MissStrawberry Fri 28-Jun-13 20:24:28

Claim back the cost of the private scan? On what grounds? The OP missed her slot.

Gobbolinothewitchscat Fri 28-Jun-13 20:30:34

It's not unreasonable to give her another. I totally agree that it can't be at a time of toby's choosing but she could easily sit up in the hospital and wait for a cancellation or a no show.

I think the prejudice to toby of not getting another scan outweighs the inconvenience to the NHS so to not try fit her in is pretty unreasonable. This isn't an verucca removal she's missed. Further, I assume Toby isn't a serial non-attendee. We all make mistakes - the NHS certainly makes plenty.

zimmyzammyzoom Fri 28-Jun-13 20:46:57

I didn't have it in either pregnancy (1 DS followed by twin DS's) all 3 are perfectly healthy thankfully. We didn't have it because we wouldn't have terminated do couldn't see the point.

Met an acquaintance last week who had it with her 2nd pregnancy. Was deemed low risk. Her 10wk old DS has Downs :-(

TobyLerone Fri 28-Jun-13 21:12:33

Hi, Gobbo grin Come back to us! We miss you!
Thanks for that. It's a good idea to book a private NT scan just in case the NHS can't fit me in. I'll probably lose a deposit if I have to cancel, but so be it.

That's very sad, zimmy. Also quite scary sad

I am fully aware that it's my fault. I haven't gone into the ins and outs, but I will be complaining to the hospital. It will absolutely not be about their inability to give me another appointment right now -- I understand that their computer system isn't working and that they literally can't. The complaint will be about the receptionist, to whom I have spoken twice and who has been incredibly rude to me both times, to the point of calling me a liar today because I said that she hadn't told me yesterday about the computer issue.

I think what I really wanted to know was how accurate the blood test without the scan is. Thanks for helping me to clarify.

TobyLerone Fri 28-Jun-13 21:15:47

And no, I'm not a serial appointment-misser!

I actually had an appointment last week, at 3.30, which the hospital cancelled and rescheduled. Yesterday's was at 3pm. I was convinced it was at 3.30, and just as I was leaving (at 3pm!) I checked the letter again. I called immediately, very apologetic, but they wouldn't see me if I'd arrived 10 minutes late.

Gobbolinothewitchscat Fri 28-Jun-13 21:18:21

I'm coming Toby! grin

That is completely the kind of thing I've done with appointments. I just get it in to my head - no doubt at all re the time. And it's always half an hour out within that hour timeframe

TobyLerone Fri 28-Jun-13 21:23:35

It was still my fault, but my brain couldn't cope with 2 different appointment times for the same appointment blush

Theas18 Fri 28-Jun-13 21:31:38

terrible with statistics zimmyzammy is that they are statistics. a 1:1000 risk of a problem with a baby means, on average for every 1000 babies born 999 willnot the problem and one will.

this is when it gets hard to understand because if your baby is the one, it seems like a 1 in 1 chance, equally that baby could be and number in the birth order. there many have been 900 normals 1st but it still doesn't mean 1 of the next 100 WILL be affected.

I guess it just depends on the ops attitude to risk and downs syndrome. my only advice is don't get too hungup it. however many tests you have you get the baby you get, and they are all amazing, and some will have abnormalities that can't be predicted ( and some will develop them too).

best ifs luck op

TobyLerone Fri 28-Jun-13 21:33:41

Thanks smile

I didn't have a NT scan because they aren't offered here in NI. I had to ask and push for the basic triple blood test.

They aren't available privately here for less than £300 either.

My bloods came back v quickly and gave me a v low risk so we are happy with that.

5madthings Sat 29-Jun-13 14:40:22

In my area you have to be over 35 for the nt scan I am under that so I paid privately. It was a trip done at my NHS hospital by the same Dr and true same machines, I just went in the evening at about 7pm? For a private app. I and the scan and the bloods done it was about £130? Anyway they fitted me in fine... Funny that when you are paying for it!

It might be worth seeing if your hospital does similar? I know lots do.

that's if you really want the scan?

You will get the triple test, blood test I think instead?

TobyLerone Sat 29-Jun-13 18:06:44

I don't think mine offer that -- at least bitchface the receptionist didn't mention it if they do. I will ask, though.

I'm 35, so I do want the reassurance/knowledge that comes with the scan. My MW assures me that the blood test is quite accurate, though, so it's not the end of the world.

HumphreyCobbler Sat 29-Jun-13 18:14:45

I always seem to be pointing this out but the NT scan looks for the three most common trisomy disorders - Patau's and Edwards as well as Down Syndrome.

I did not have an NT scan (they are not offered in Wales) for my first baby and he came back low risk from the triple blood test. It was discovered he had Patau's at the 20 week scan. Finding out earlier would have been better. I have paid for scans in my three subsequent pregnancies, it is a non invasive test so I was happy to have it.

Having said all that, I think having no tests is a perfectly valid option for many people who would not terminate, I just think people think only about Down Syndrome (which is also a condition that can vary in severity).

I am not trying to be alarmist OP - MOST babies are fine. Best of luck.

5madthings Sat 29-Jun-13 18:14:53

I had to phone the consultants personal secretary and she arranged it. The regular main desk type receotioinists didn't do private bookings., I think I just googled to get the number.

I wanted the reassurance as well, nice guidelines recommend the nuchal now instead of the blood test I think.

TobyLerone Sat 29-Jun-13 18:31:12

Not alarmist at all, Humphrey. I know that information, and my saying DS, rather than listing the disorders, was just shorthand (although there was no way you could possibly have known that!). And YY, having no tests is definitely a valid choice if you wouldn't terminate.

Many thanks for the info, though smile

And thanks, 5madthings. Something to bear in mind.

Excited85 Sat 29-Jun-13 18:44:15

So are the blood tests not as accurate/good then? The sonographer at my 12 week didn't mention anything about the blood test being inferior when she couldn't get the measurements so I believed that the result of my bloods was as accurate as the scan info. If I'd known that they perhaps weren't I might have paid for a second scan, just thought one option was as good as the other?

5madthings Sat 29-Jun-13 18:52:15

The scan and the blood tests results is more accurate? I think they combine those results with your age to give the risk assessment?

Also the scan is done earlier than the triple test bloods? In my area at least the blood test is done at sixteen wks, by getting the nuchal scan at 12/13 wks I knew if I got high risk I had the option of CVS which can be done earlier than an amnio. For me finding out earlier if there was a problem would have given me a bit of time to decide what to do. I am not sure what choice I would make but for me at least if I was going to terminate I would rather have done it sooner than later.

Gobbolinothewitchscat Sat 29-Jun-13 18:54:22

My understanding from DH's Aunt is that trials show there is more of a risk of a false positive which can then lead to an amino which has it's own risks.

She also pointed out that the 12 week test obviously gives you an earlier answer. Obviously, some people will carry on with the pregnancy come what may. But, if you chose not or are unsure, then finding out the results at 12 weeks gives you longer to consider your options.

I do not know the margin of false positives and I'm very aware that the 12 week test is relatively new and not offered everywhere so the 16 week bloods can be a very good option. However, personally, we preferred to pay privately for the 12 week NT test for the reasons we discussed with her

HumphreyCobbler Sat 29-Jun-13 18:54:58

I didn't particularly mean you Toby - I tend to want to mention it when people say they wouldn't have the test as they would not terminate for Down Syndrome. I think my history makes me wants to point out that there are other, terminal conditions that the screen is for.

I possibly feel defensive about the decision I made, and this is really no one's problem but my own.

PoppyAmex Sat 29-Jun-13 21:55:20

Humphrey that was actually a very good point.

In every interaction I had with HCPs they always mentioned Downs and asked what we would do in that case, but I keep pointing out that if there are markers for Edwards or Patau I'd want to know NOW to terminate asap.

hazeyjane Sat 29-Jun-13 22:05:11

Like HumphreyCobbler, I had a private scan, more to check for Edwards than downs, as there is a family history. As it was our tests and scans came back as 'normal', but ds has another genetic condition that didn't show up.

TobyLerone Sat 29-Jun-13 22:14:26

YY definitely an excellent point. I also meant to say that I'm sorry about the decision you had to make, Humphrey. It must have been unbearable and I can't possibly imagine flowers

fuckwittery Sun 30-Jun-13 09:08:39

Humphrey am sorry to hear about your test results, am angry to read that the NT also tests for Patau's and Edwards as I specifically asked my MW if the bloods and nuchal fold scan were for anything other than Downs and she said no. I didn't want to know about Downs but I would have definitely wanted to know about Pataus and Edwards

Does anyone know if you don't have the NT, would these show up on the 20 week?

fuckwittery Sun 30-Jun-13 09:10:31

Sorry, just re-read and saw that Patau's syndrome, showed up for your baby on the 20 week scan Humphreys, so I am guessing the answer is yes, it does show up then.

lightrain Sun 30-Jun-13 09:16:20

Another vote for baby bond, they are excellent and in my opinion, it's totally worth £100 to have the NT scan. My experience if bloods only is also that they give false positives (well, increased risk where there is none, as N.t is not a diagnosis but a risk ratio, obviously. From what I read about it at the time, this is more likely to happen if you are carrying a boy, interestingly).

NHS are not being that helpful and time is of the essence, so I'd stop bothering with secretaries, midwives, etc. (stressful and annoying!) and just book baby bond.

PoppyAmex Sun 30-Jun-13 11:17:56

I had loads of scans with Babybond too (both in previous and current pregnancies) and thought they were excellent.

I'm actually having another tomorrow and just found out that they now do "abbreviated" versions of certain scans, a lot cheaper. (eg gender scans for 39 pounds and "quick assure" for 59 pounds).

TobyLerone Sun 30-Jun-13 11:35:40

Ok, well there is a Babybond place about 20 miles from me, so I will contact them if no joy on Tuesday.

Thanks for the recommendations smile

Theas18 Mon 01-Jul-13 23:22:40

Any luck op?

TobyLerone Tue 02-Jul-13 06:48:22

It's today that the secretary should be getting back to me. A lady on my antenatal thread had an appointment at the same hospital yesterday and said that the computer system was still down then, so today should be the day! If I haven't heard by lunchtime, I'll ring them.

plummyjam Tue 02-Jul-13 07:06:00

Just to add my tuppeneth, I really think they should have scanned you on the day.

OK you were running late but you rang to let them know, chances are the scan clinic was running late too so it probably wouldn't have inconvenienced anyone. They know that the NT scan is time critical, it just seems sad to me that they couldn't cut you some slack. Others may not have been in a position to pay privately having missed it.

I'm a hcp and patients are often late for appointments but if there is a good reason, or they ring up to let us know eg: stuck in traffic - in fact even if they do none of the above and are late but it's obviously important they need to be seen the same day then we see them.

I hope everything gets sorted out in time for you OP.

TobyLerone Tue 02-Jul-13 07:42:05

I actually wish that I hadn't rung, and had just turned up 10 mins late iinstead. They might have seen me then. So much for doing the right thing! grin

Gobbolinothewitchscat Tue 02-Jul-13 09:25:06

toby - I spoke to DH's aunt last night and she gave me a few tips. She said you need to go above the jobs worth receptionists now. They're looking at it from a purely non-medical/ethical point if view. Fair enough but you need to speak to someone who actually gets that part

You should call or turn up at the hospital and insist on seeing either the head sonographer or the lead consultant. Obviously you would have to wait to see them but yiu can politely insist to fo that. If they ate not available at all, ask to soeak to the supervisor of midwives. Explain that you may consider a termination if there are abnormalities (think you said that up thread). Therefore, if they absolutely cannot fit you in now for a scan, the net result is that you could end up having a late termination post 20 weeks which arguably is medically not the best option plus, arguably, potentially more traumatic for you due to the methods that would need to be used (she did stress - if course - that any termination at any stage is traumatic).

That being the case, the prejudice to you is much outweighed by their basic refusal to fit you in

Her view us that, if you are there in person, they are much more likely to fit you in than if you speak to them on the phone.

Notwithstanding all of this, you should still have your babybond scan as back up

TobyLerone Tue 02-Jul-13 09:43:54

Oh, bless you smile

Confrontation isn't really my thing -- and phone calls terrify me. I'm already dreading calling later blush

The problem is that the ultrasound dept is having a new computer system installed and they're still testing it. I know this to be true. In the meantime, they can't give out any new appointments, nor can they see any cancellations. Despite the fact that the receptionist was really quite nasty and rude, I know that it's not her fault that she can't help. I'm not sure that anyone above her could help either.
They're so busy at the moment that fitting in a half hour appointment for someone who didn't turn up at their allotted appointment time might well be impossible, regardless of who I speak to.

I really appreciate the info, Gobbo. Thank you so much for going to the trouble. If it were not my fault in the first place, you can bet I'd be raising merry hell about it! But as it is, I don't really feel like I can make demands.

I am lucky enough to have the option to go private, so I kind of feel like I should, rather than force them to give me an appointment which might be better used on someone who didn't cock up. If they have a cancellation, I'll take it. But I don't feel like I can push it. I'm not above a bit of begging, though!

I will still complain about the horrid receptionist, but not about the lack of replacement appointments.

DeffoBossLa Tue 02-Jul-13 09:47:41

When I went for my first scan they decided I was over 14 weeks so it was too late. I couldn't have the blood test because I was having twins.I basically just had to wait until they were born. They both both fine.

TobyLerone Tue 02-Jul-13 09:50:28

Oh, that must have been worrying for you. Well, I know I'm not having twins, so at least I can have the blood test.

Gobbolinothewitchscat Tue 02-Jul-13 10:14:22

toby - I totally understand. To be honest, when mine was fucked up with DS, I just booked the private scan. I didn't want the aggro.

Is it worth just leaving the receptionist to her own devices and not worrying about it anymore if you have the babybond one?

TobyLerone Tue 02-Jul-13 10:30:50

I might as well call this afternoon anyway. Then I'll make arrangements for a Babybond one immediately (if they can fit me in!) if the hospital can't help. The receptionist did say that it was quite possible there would be a cancellation in time this week, but that she just couldn't tell me until the system was working. If the system isn't working by this afternoon, I'll have to give up, I think.

The other issue is that obviously DH would like to be there if possible. It'll realistically take him about an hour and a half to get home from work. The hospital is very local, but the Babybond place is a good extra 30 minutes away. Either one will be a fairly last-minute appointment, I would imagine, so the local hospital gives a little more likelihood that he'll make it. It's a small consideration in the big scheme of things, but a consideration nonetheless.

lightrain Tue 02-Jul-13 13:45:33

Baby bond do weekends. You should be able to check availability online, just go through as if you were booking and the available spaces will show up.

Fingers crossed hospital can fit you in.

TobyLerone Tue 02-Jul-13 16:33:52

Thanks for all your help, everyone smile

The horrid receptionist (who has redeemed herself now, and been given the benefit of the doubt by me!) called back and asked if I can come in tomorrow at 12. Of course I can!

I'm going to assume she had a couple of bad days last week and let her off smile

5madthings Tue 02-Jul-13 16:57:32

Yay! Good luck, hope all goes well xxx

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