Earlier this week I was lucky enough to be invited to Babybond Cardiff to have a 4d growth scan. To say I was excited is an understatement, I’ve liked the idea of having a 4d scan for a while but was not able to justify both the cost and need to actually have one. As you may remember when I had my scan at 21 weeks we were told that baby was most likely a girl but as we were unable to get a clear view we were unsure. So I hoped having a 4d scan at this stage (28 weeks 5days) would be able to confirm the baby’s sex. I was also very curious about the whole 4d scan experience as have heard so many friends and other people talking about what a magical experience they had had when having one.
So on Monday morning I dropped the older two boys off at the school breakfast club at 8.20am and went to collect my mum. Dad of three was unable to come with me as was very unwell so I asked my mum if she would like to come with me instead, she jumped at the chance. Having picked my mum up we set off on the two hour drive to Cardiff and the Babybond clinic. I was feeling very excited but also quite nervous about the scan but it was nice to have some time with my mum without the children being with us. My mum has never been to any of my scans with any of my pregnancies so this was a special opportunity for her too.
When we arrived in Cardiff it didn’t take us long to find the Babybond clinic from the directions I had. By the time I had managed to park it was five minutes before my appointment time so we headed straight into the clinic. The Cardiff Clinic is located on the East of Cardiff in an industrial estate next to a fitness centre. The clinic itself is located inside a nice building which houses several other business. We were directed through some double doors and along the corridor to the Babybond waiting room were I checked in. It was a very cold windy day outside but once inside the waiting room it was lovely and warm and it was softly lit which was very relaxing after the long drive. I was given a consent form to read through and sign before we could start the scan. Once I had signed the form and handed it back to the member of staff I was shown into the scan room where I was greeted by Jane who is the owner and senior sonographer of the Cardiff Babybond Clinic. I was asked to make myself comfortable on the examination table and Jane started to explain what to expect from the scan. Just like the waiting room the scan room was lovely and warm and softly lit.
Once I was comfortable Jane began the scan, she started off in 2d which is what ultrasound scans are carried out in hospital are carried out using and slowly worked her way through baby explaining everything we could see on the screen at the same time. Jane asked if we knew the baby’s sex and I explained we had been told it was most likely a girl at the last scan but as the sanographer had not been able to get a clear view we were not completely sure. I asked if it was possible to confirm baby’s sex for us while we were there, Jane said she would see what she could do. Almost immediately Jane was able to get a very clear view and was able to show us both in 2d and then switched briefly into 4d that baby was a girl. We were both so thrilled, my mum asked if it was 100% sure and Jane explained that they will never say 100% but if you are able to get a very clear view as we had it was safe to say baby is a girl. I don’t think I could stop smiling and neither could my mum. Jane then proceeded to take measurements of baby in order to be able to give an estimated weight of baby, as well as carrying out a well-being checklist. Jane was also able to confirm baby’s position which since the previous week had changed from being in the breech position (bottom down in pelvis) to head down which is the best position for labour and is the position most babies will be in at around 28 weeks. Jane was able to give us an estimated weight of around 2lbs already which is amazing.
|28 weeks and 5 days, having a nap
The whole scan lasted about half an hour, after which we were asked to have a seat back in the waiting room while Jane got the pictures and report ready for us. While in the waiting room mum and I couldn’t stop smiling and saying what an amazing experience that had been. After about 5 minutes we were given a little pink babybond bag and inside was a short dvd which had footage of the scan on, a well being checklist which Jane had completed showing babies position, that heartbeat had been heard, and fetal movement had been felt. There was also a little folder with babies measurements and estimated weight, 2 black and white 2d scan prints and 4 thermal 3d scan prints. The prints were amazing and a lovely keepsake of the scan. Both mum and I agreed that Jane had been fantastic throughout the scan both explaining what we could see on the tv screen and also trying to get the best possible views of baby for us. This defiantly helped make the experience special and one we certainly won’t forget in a hurry.
Once we had left the clinic I rang dad of three to let him know we were defiantly having a girl and my mum rang my dad to say it was defiantly a granddaughter. This will be the first granddaughter on my side of the family and the third on dad of three’s side so everyone was very excited. We got back just in time to collect the boys from school they were very excited to see the scan pictures. So when we got home I showed them to the boys and dad of three. The older two kept saying “is that the baby in your tummy mummy” I also put the dvd on for them to see and the older two were fascinated by all the pictures of the baby. Rowan kept pointing to the tv and saying “mummy’s baby”. I think the dvd is a great way of enabling the other children in the family to bond with baby before baby arrives.
“Babybond are a nationwide specialist group of qualified health care professionals and managers who, having started 1998, understand the value of direct access to private ultrasound for our clients. With our Babybond® brand, we pioneered ultrasound eCommerce for pregnant parents in the UK with our award winning Instant Scan Booking web application. We are now extending our range of services with Ultrasound Direct, so both women and men too can have their health needs met by our established values. By offering dedicated, separate clinics for Babybond®, Women’s and Men’s Health scans, we are continuing to grow our network of locations and range of services so that more and more people can get easier access to consistent quality, affordable private ultrasound”. Taken from Babybond website.
Babybond has a variety of scans available including: Early Scan to confirm viability which is carried out between 7 – 11 weeks gestation, Dating scan between 10-16 weeks, NT scan and Bloods analysis which is 90% -95% accurate and carried out between 11 to 13weeks 6 days gestation. Anomaly scan between 19 to 24 weeks gestation, 2d growth scan between 24 and 34 weeks, gender scan between 16 to 34 weeks, a presentation scan which is carried out between 35 weeks to 40 weeks.
There is then the 4d scans which include the 4d growth scan which cost £139, ideally it is carried out between 24 and 32 weeks gestation but in the case of multiple pregnancies it is between 20 and 26 weeks gestation, which is what I had. 4d Bonding scan option 2 between 24 and 32 weeks, bonding scan option 1 which again is carried out between 24 and 32 weeks. Babybond 4dfreeview is also available with several of the scans at no additional cost, please see website for details.
I personally have to say that the whole experience is worth the cost of the scan and in many cases I can see how some parents to be would find the 4d scan very reassuring. For me it is certainly an experience neither myself or my mum will forget. I wish I had had the opportunity to have a 4d scan with my previous pregnancies as it was such a fantastic experience and made me feel much closer to baby. The scan pictures and dvd have also helped introduce the new baby to Rowan and hopefully will help the transition of him no longer being the baby of the family to a big brother easier when baby arrives. The staff at the Cardiff clinic were fantastic throughout our short time at the clinic. They put both myself and my mum at ease and explained every aspect what we were seeing, as well as answering any questions we had.
We went to the Cardiff Babybond clinic which has been there for about four years now, there are two other clinics in the southwest region which are located in Bristol and Swindon. There are 54 Babybond clinics throughout the UK and Ireland, for more information and to contact the clinics please visit Babybond You can also book your scan appointment on line as well. You can also find Babybond on facebook .