10th week of pregnancy is an exciting time for you because the baby’s growth is in full swing. Your sonographer will show to you many changes using the ultrasound.
Ultrasound at the 10th week looks very different from just a few weeks ago. Now, you can see much more details. Your baby’s development is obvious in all of the organs, and you can see that clearly on a screen. The baby is moving more often. Although you cannot fill its movements, you can see that by the ultrasound.
What Is Ultrasound Examination?
Ultrasound examination is a painless, safe, accurate, cost-effective and non-invasive method of examination, regardless of whether it is a trans-abdominal or trans-vaginal examination. An ultrasound scan typically takes approximately 10 minutes. The ultrasound waves are emitted from a device that will be placed on the skin of your abdomen or inside your vagina. The transducer scans a fetus in thin slices and reflects back onto the same device.
An ultrasound that scans through your lower abdomen is called the trans-abdominal ultrasound. During the trans-abdominal examination, a sonographer uses a device which is greater than the device for trans-vaginal examination. Doctor will slide with the device crossover your tummy and ultrasound waves that reflect will create an image on the screen of an ultrasound apparatus. The pressure on your tummy can be a little bit unpleasant if you have a full bladder. During the pregnancy, the uterus will rise as the amount of amniotic fluid gets greater, therefore, at the later stages of pregnancy, your bladder wouldn’t have to be so full.
During trans-vaginal examination, a sonographer will insert a transducer into your vagina and move the device slowly around. There aren’t obstacles such as abdominal muscle layers and pictures are clearer. Some sonographers agree on the conclusion that the trans-vaginal ultrasound examination allows more accurate data and clearer pictures.
What Can You See from the Baby’s Changes?
Your baby was classified as an embryo at the last period. Now, we call them the fetus. Your baby is continuing to develop. The most critical stage of their development is now finished, and you are starting the period where the risks of any congenital defects drop significantly. But still, it is necessary to follow the guidelines of your practitioner to have a healthy pregnancy from this stage on.
Length and Weight. Your baby is still very small. He/she is now approaching 3-4 cm in length. His/her body is more in proportion. Your uterus is enlarged to follow the growing baby’s size. The weight of the fetus is gaining about 4 g. Your sonographer will measure all with an ultrasound.
Neck and Head. His/her neck start to develop and elongate, so as its head which gets more distinguished. But it still makes up more than half of its body size. His face is now looking more human. Development of the eyes and ears continue. His/her future milk teeth already are beginning to form into his/her jawbones.
The ultrasound scan shows the head, which comprises about half the length of the baby with some hair.
Arms and Legs. His/her fingers and toes aren’t longer webbed at 10 weeks, but they are now separated and tiny nails are forming on them. They can bend their arms at the wrist, too. Bones will begin to harden and cartilages will also keep growing. You can see the thin arms and legs continue to grow longer as well as their movement gets more coordinated than before 10th week.
Digestive and Endocrine Systems. The yolk sac is separate, and the umbilical cord is visible now. Your baby’s intestines are still part of the umbilical cord, but they will soon be covered with the skin. The intestines have become tubes with muscles and they are ready to begin the peristalsis. Around the 10th week, his/her digestive system is beginning to produce digestive juices and the baby starts to practice swallowing. The diaphragm begins to develop, gradually separating the chest and abdomen.
His/her thyroid gland, which controls his body by hormones, is now functioning. His pancreas is making digestive enzymes, so his gallbladder is secreting bile as well. The sex organs also grow rapidly, but you cannot see yet what is the gender of the baby.
Heart and Lungs. Baby’s heart is now fully formed with 4 chambers inside it. It is beating about 160-180 beats per minutes. Lung tissue continues developing, since the chest of the baby is a little bit wider.
Amniotic Fluid. Amniotic fluid is the liquid which contains water and nutrients that help the baby develop. It surrounds a baby in the uterus, and protects the baby from internal and external pressure, infection, as well as it helps his lungs to develop. Using the ultrasound, your sonographer can measure an amount of the fluid. Too much amniotic fluid shows us that there is some disorder which can threaten the viability of the fetus.
What Are the Complications You Can Diagnose?
At the 10th week of pregnancy, your sonographer can diagnose ectopic pregnancy and molar pregnancy.
Ectopic Pregnancy. When the fertilized egg is implanted outside the uterus, usually in the fallopian tube, it is called an ectopic pregnancy. The primary signs of ectopic pregnancy are vaginal bleeding, abdominal pain, and nausea. Some of these symptoms are classic symptoms of normal pregnancy, so the ectopic pregnancy is sometimes difficult to diagnose. The best way to determine ectopic pregnancy is a measurement of HCG in the blood. It is a hormone produced during pregnancy and doubles approximately every two days. When HCG doesn’t increase sufficiently, it can be a sign of an ectopic pregnancy.
Molar Pregnancy. Other complications that could happen are ruined egg or molar pregnancy. A molar pregnancy occurs if there is a fertilized egg. The resulting embryo grows slowly or it doesn’t develop at all. The most common outcome of this pregnancy is miscarriage; otherwise, these pregnancies require a surgical procedure to remove the abnormal tissue.
Ultrasound can help with the diagnosis of both of these abnormalities.
The sonogram shows disordered tissue like Swiss cheese. This is the mole.
Trans-vaginal ultrasound images show an early viable embryo within an intrauterine gestation sac and another live embryo within the Fallopian tube.