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Increased risk of learning difficulties the more scans you have, is my MW talking out of her..

(41 Posts)
FoofFighter Wed 16-Jan-13 19:53:15


MW today was banging on about private scans and that the more scans you have the more likely you are to have a baby with learning difficulties like Dyslexia etc shortly before saying I might get an extra scan at 34 weeks if I am lucky?!

I can't find much concerning this on Dr. Google and what little there is dates back to the 90s..

Has anyone got any advice about this? I'm not worried, just annoyed if she is giving out duff advice to others who may panic about it.

PaleHousewifeOfCumbriaCounty Thu 17-Jan-13 09:25:45

Very dangerous for a so called professional to be spouting things like that without an evidence base

LeBFG Thu 17-Jan-13 09:34:09

There's a good argument to doing more scans in fact. Routine third trimester scans are great for checking cords around necks, foetal wellbeing, growth and others things too I'm sure. I don't think this is routine in the UK (I'm in France - this is routine here). For instance, Singapore do lots of scan and have one of the lowest stillbirth rates in the world.

TwitchyTail Thu 17-Jan-13 09:55:22

Agree with LeBFG. I had a growth scan at 28 weeks for being marginally underweight pre-pregnancy. Growth was fine but it incidentally picked up a problem with the placenta, and I'm now being monitored and treated appropriately with plans for early delivery if/when things deteriorate. Without this, my baby could well have been stillborn and I'd never have known why (it is not something that could have been picked up any other way until it was too late).

So I'm taking all the scans I can get thanks very much.

Startail Thu 17-Jan-13 10:06:04

DD1 (lots of extra scans 32 weeks+ for low fluid and being small for dates) and DFs twins (extra scans for being twins) are dyslexic and one twin is left handed.

Non of or other DCs who haven't had extra scans are dyslexic.

Mind you I'm dyslexic too and I don't thing scans existed.

bamboozled Thu 17-Jan-13 10:09:20

Total and utter bollocks. You should report her for scaremongering.

bamboozled Thu 17-Jan-13 10:19:39

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Startail Thu 17-Jan-13 10:41:50

Yes, I would like to point out that anicdote doesn't equal evidence.
I'm certain that DD1 is dyslexic due to being my DD and nothing to do with extra scans. She's very like me in other ways too.

Clear being small and having low amniotic fluid levels may be a risk too.

However, DD2 was pretty small too, but I had laid back MWs and no extra scans. She is as undyslexic as it is possible to be. However, once again I think that is genetic. She is DHs DD and his English teacher DMum's grand child to the letter.

The twins are IVF which also may or may not have an effect.

MimiCooper Thu 17-Jan-13 11:26:00

Because there has not been enough research done into the possible side effects of Ultasound Scans in pregnancy to make give a 100% definitive answer,(its not been too long medically speaking since scans in pregnancy have been done). Most Obstetricians and midwives would be irresponsible to say they are risk free. However saying that the benefits are considered to outweigh the risks in most situations. There have been studies into Autism links, Deafness and ADHD and many other things which appear to be on the rise in children to see if the Scans are the cause, but nothing has been proven yet. So whereas your midwife was wrong to say too many scans will cause a problem, she was right in that nobody can say scans are 100% safe.

Vix07 Thu 17-Jan-13 11:50:56

I was told the same thing - have just googled to see if I can find the original - but this is similar

The original specifically referenced US studies done on rats/mice showing significant defects but obviously these cannot be replicated in pregnant women for ethical reasons. It is also worth bearing in mind that where data has been collated from women who have had a more intensive scan programme where the pattern of higher levels of problems had originally been picked up these women were already high risk hence the need for additional scans... tho this is not exactly conclusive refutation.

FWIW I took the line that the benefits of the standard scans done here (esp the 20 wk abnormalities check) out weighs the potential risk, and that we simply would avoid any medically unnecessary scans.

FoofFighter Thu 17-Jan-13 12:18:13

Thank you all, I think I need to say something to someone don't I?

orangetickle Thu 17-Jan-13 12:39:09

Load of crap.

I'm in the USA and have been scanned at EVERY SINGLE appointment (I'm not high risk, no concern over the baby etc - just standard procedure). Not for long each time, but I reckon I've had over 20 scans this whole pregnancy so far (am 34wks)....

Emsyboo Thu 17-Jan-13 12:42:44

Definitely take it higher think of any inexperienced or naive mums who may take it to the word.
The pros of scans outweigh the possibility that there may be adverse effects.
Scans give you knowledge that could save lives and are just sound waves.
Millions of babies are born that have been scanned but they are also exposed to more of other things so a rise in autism, dyslexia etc cant be put down to scans until there is better analysis no medical professional should be stating this as fact. X

PetiteRaleuse Thu 17-Jan-13 12:50:43

Yes you need to say something. It was a very irresponsible thing to say. I was scanned between every two and four weeks of my pregnancies. My ob gyn said that while they couldn't be certain than scanning did no harm, for the moment there is no evidence to say it does any harm. Your mw needs to stop spreading crap.

MrFranklyShankly Thu 17-Jan-13 13:29:25

Oh my god what planet is this woman on....I work in a service that provides care for adults with intellectual disabilities for the 13 years and NEVER once has this EVER been a reasons for a diagnosis for any of the many syndromes that come under the heading learning disabilities......also I'm left handed, and was born in rural Ireland during the dark ages where there was no scans for women, where you seen the dr at 6 months pregnant and they said yep your pregnant!!! My mum never had any scans with any of her pregnancies...So that rules that one out too!

Patchouli Thu 17-Jan-13 13:43:39

I remember reading that scans had shown to cause neurological damage in mice - so they considering higher instances in autism, dyslexia, schizophrenia etc
And that some babies move about a lot / flinch etc as if to avoid vibrations/heat or whatever the feel from the process.

If you have a complicated pregnancy it is better to have scans than to let problems go undetected with possibly tragic results. "

But I would avoid having scans for entertainment.

VickyU Thu 17-Jan-13 15:32:32

From what I have read this is utter nonsense. But I did read some research that suggested that private scans where the main objective is to see the baby/get a good picture may be slightly harmful if done too often as they tend to focs on the baby's head more to 'get a good photo' whereas general health scans like growth scans don't do this so are not harmful. This might be utter b*ll*cks but it is what I read! Having said that, I have had 7 hospital scans so far and a final one next week because of various health problems plus 2 private scans at 16 and 21 weeks so I can't have been that worried!

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