How accurate is the ultra sound tech?

Sarah - posted on 09/20/2011 ( 55 moms have responded )

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I had an anatomy scan done at 19 weeks and the tech said 90% boy. I just changed dr's and had a check up ultrasound done today at 21 weeks at the new dr's office. The ultrasound tech that works there was out for the week so I had to let a fill in do my ultra sound. She told me that she thinks it is 52% girl! She first told me she didn't want to tell me because she couldn't tell, then she said 30% girl then changed it to 52%. Either way I am so confused now! The first tech at 19 weeks showed me what looked to be a penis now this tech showed me what she thought was a vagina! I don't care either way as long as my baby is healthy, but for the past few weeks I have been thinking I was having a boy.They gave me an appointment to see the real tech that works there next week who has been doing ultrasounds for 30 years (the one who did it today looked to be no older then 30) They say she is more experienced and could let me know for sure. What do you think? Has this ever happened to you?
The first tech showed me what she thought was the penis now this tech showed me what she thought was the 3 lines. I have no idea what I am looking at when they show me the screen! This is just so frustrating! I don't care either way as long as my baby is healthy, but I just don't want to keep being told different things.

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Litha - posted on 10/01/2012

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im 22 weeks pregnant now and i had my scan when i was 20 weeks, the sonographer told me that i'm having a boy but i love to have a girl. Is there any chances of mistaken? I hope next time if i check again it will turn out a boy

Jill - posted on 09/23/2011

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I have been doing OB ultrasounds for 22 years and have not been wrong yet!!! You should not try and determine sex before 16 weeks and only if you be 100% do you say! They either have a scrotum and penis or you see the labia.
Simple as that! Unless a patient is morbidly obese, I can always tell-I also have a great machine which helps a lot!
So make sure you get your us from an experienced certified sonographer with a decent machine:) Congrats!!

Sherri - posted on 09/21/2011

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No never happened to me. However, the rule of thumb usually is if they say boy it almost is always correct, however, if they say girl that can be off because all babies start off as girls anyways until their parts develop. So more mistakes are usually made with a girl diagnosis then a boys.

Amanda - posted on 09/22/2011

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@Grandma Wood US techs are much better at reading a US then a doctor. Actually most doctors never look at your US, they read the report written by the US tech.



As for OP, all three of my children my US tech was right, but thats because my kids all flashed the screen. There were no if ands or buts about what was between their legs. I would just wait for another US and hope your child works with the US tech instead of against them. :0)

Sherri - posted on 09/21/2011

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All Ultrasound techs are specialized in their field and can inform you of the sex of your child and show you and label and point out to you all the body parts etc.



What they can not do is talk to you about anything medically. Such as if they saw something wrong with your baby during ultrasound.



Telling you what sex your child is, is not medical. I know I am currently pregnant with #4 and everyone was done this way. Actually just went for my ultrasound yesterday and it is my profile pic.

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Alda - posted on 10/01/2012

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I used to work in the antenatal department of the hospital, and scans are often wrong. The umbilical cord can be seen as a penis etc. In fact, the hospital's policy was not, under any circumstances, to tell the parents what they thought the sex of the baby was (they've now changed their policy). Basically, unless the baby is lying facing the camera with its legs spread it's very difficult to tell the sex.



I remember one time the parents absolutely did not want to know the sex, and they wanted a scan picture. However, this was obviously a boy and proud of it. There was no way we could miss it. We ended up having to cut a hole in the middle of the picture so the parents didn't see the sex lol.

Raquel - posted on 10/05/2011

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OK Sherri, if location determines whether an ultrasound is good or not, don't have one in San Diego, California ;) !

Sherri - posted on 09/24/2011

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I think it depends where you are Raquel I have had 7 ultrasounds. 4 pregnancies and not one has been wrong yet about anything.

Raquel - posted on 09/24/2011

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Ultrasounds are notoriously wrong. I had 11 ultrasounds during my first pregnancy, nearly all of which said that my daughter was not growing well, that the placenta was not functioning properly, etc .etc. After 3 weeks of battling 6 doctors, I finally gave in to an induction, which ended in a cesarean. My daughter was perfect, nearly 7 pounds. I had the placenta sent to pathology and it came out perfectly as well. During my second pregnancy, an ultrasound said that my second daughter had a likelihood of a genetic abnormality and might not survive past one year. After a tremendous amount of aggravation, I finally decided to tell them to go to hell and did not consent to further testing. My second daughter came out perfect, no defects. Needless to say, I refused all ultrasounds with my third pregnancy. What a wonderful, peaceful pregnancy, beautiful birth, and perfect (surprise!) son. If you don't care either way, stop subjecting your baby to the utrasounds (yes, they feel it!), and enjoy your pregnancies! This is a magical time, don't let technology take away that magic!

Shannon - posted on 09/24/2011

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as the mother a son that was "90% girl" according to the ultrasound techs......believe nothing unless there are clear cut signs!!!!!

Sara - posted on 09/23/2011

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That would be very confusing!! I am an Ultrasound Tech and I can tell you it depends on the experience of the Tech... However..boys are usually easier to see and harder to mix up. Go with what the Tech with 30 years experience tells you! I personally don't like to guess..I know it or I don't..I don't give percentages... Hope this helps! And good luck!!

Suzi - posted on 09/23/2011

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It depends on the way the baby is laying but if the first one said 90 I'd go with that. If you have a pic from the first one the easiest way to tell is if it looks rounded and cloudy between the legs that's a boy, the three lines the other one saw could have been the cord. 19 weeks is a good time to see..good luck!

Wanda - posted on 09/23/2011

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I am a mother of 5 kids 3 boys in a row and then two girls. The tech always showed me that they saw a little turtle and it was going to be a boy. The last tow times I was told that they don't see a turtle and I was having a girl. They got all 5 right but, 52% is nothing more than 2% percent more than a guess. I would say that the first tech was right as long as your baby's legs were open and they got a clear view Wait til the more experienced tech comes back and I bet she says boy if she get a clear view. Good Luck and Congrats

Rebecca - posted on 09/23/2011

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I don't care how long a tech has nor has not practiced - I'd be asking their accuracy rate. That being said, our son was a surprise, but when we had our u/s, it was commented that you could definitely tell what the baby was, so DH and I figured boy. With our daughter, I had 3 u/s - first regular one, another a week later (low fluid), and then a high risk one. At all 3, I was told "girl". This was 2 different techs. BUT the first tech (who did the first 2) said that sometimes you aren't real sure and she was about 75% sure it was a girl - so she was honest. The other tech said "definitely a girl".

Maybe you are meant to have a surprise, maybe you have a baby playing with the techs, maybe you have techs who aren't sure...if nothing else, do neutral decorations and clothes for now and wait for baby to come!!!

Ali - posted on 09/22/2011

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Hi With my first I was told its a Boy and he is!!!LOL with my second my DH did not want to find out but here in South Africa my OB does a DVD of the US and gives it to us so I have all of my scans so you can imagine how I analysed those scans anyway sometimes I thought definatly a BOY at others A GIRL but out popped my second little darling BOY so for an untrained eye its very difficult to see...I 'saw' the three lines for a girl a few times!!! Anyway its such a nice suprise to here that ITS A BOY!!

Carolyn - posted on 09/22/2011

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I was 26 weeks when i had my son and the tech said he would be 2 lbs 3 ozs and thats what he was so i think they are good and know what they are doing

MELISSA - posted on 09/22/2011

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My first pregnancy I was told I was having a girl. Three weeks before I delivered I found out I was having a boy!! It was pretty difficult trying to exchange items and change the whole bedroom.

Cmathies - posted on 09/22/2011

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Take it as a sign and just be surprised with the sex of your baby. Their are few surprises we experience in life and this is one of them. I loved hearing my husband both times yell out "It's a Girl!". It was so exciting and besides it's your family and friends want to know more than you...be surprised! You can do it!

Jessica - posted on 09/22/2011

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Sounds like your little one wants to be a surprise if you like it or not :)

Lisa - posted on 09/22/2011

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good reason for not bothering to find out, if there is no reason and it doesn't worry you just wait and see what nature has provided, such a lovely surprise when you deliver :)

Janice - posted on 09/22/2011

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At my OBs office they dont use percentages. They do a 3d scan between 19-21 weeks and if they can clearly see whats going on they will say what it is. If it is unsure they just say they aren't sure.

With my daughter I was only 18weeks when they did the scan and they said we thinks its a girl but its not 100%. They were nice and offered a quick ultrasound at the next appt. to see if they could confirm which they did.

I'm 29 weeks with #2 and they said it was a boy. We will see......

Really they are rarely 100% sure at the 20 week ultrasound. I am a planner and I like to know so while it doesn't matter which sex it is, I completely understand being frustrated by not knowing. :)

Kristen - posted on 09/22/2011

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Elizabeth anybody can tell at 19 wks. I I found out at 15 and they gave us a free one again in one week to assure us b/c our 1st 4 were boys. They were right w/ all 5 babies!

Pamela - posted on 09/22/2011

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You said yourself that you don'r care either way as long as the child is healthy. The sex of the baby is determined by eye sight, not the ultrasound. The ultrasound is to determine the baby's heart rate and other specifics. Until the fetus is older and the sexual parts are more developed it can be difficult to "see" if the fetus has a penis or not.

If you TRULY do not care why are you letting the discrepancy bother you so much? After all, a healthy baby is what all Moms truly want.

Brenda - posted on 09/22/2011

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I was to have boy girl twins(found by ultra sound at 5 months) Delivered at 7months and have 2 girls so I would say in my case 50%.

Sherri - posted on 09/22/2011

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No way that would not fly with me Mommy we found out for all 4 pregnancies and I can't even imagine not being able to know. With this one we were 100% positive anyways as I had a CVS done so they actually ran babies DNA. No questioning that one.

Juniper - posted on 09/22/2011

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Didn't read all the posts, but looks like you have good advice. I would stick to being happy you are pregnant. I only asked what the sex was with my 3rd and they said boy but they also said that the Dr had to talk to me about something to do with growth and the chances of downsyndrom type developments. So for wks while they waited for test results I ignored the fact that I was told anything. Personally I wanted to bond with my baby not be over worried about the sex.
On another note I work with xrays and they look similar. how xrays work is the more solid the structure being looked at the whiter it appears. So bone is really white, thick skin looks grey/white, and thinner skin or space or in this case liquid is black. This is why when you look at the ultrasound pic of babies face It looks like a skull. You can clearly see the bone and teeth buds as white but the nasel and eye cavities are liquid ans thin tissue so it appears black or empty.
They are pretty accrate on telling of the sex but not always correct it does have alot to do with position of the baby how big your baby is and experience of the tech.
Try to be happy in that you are having a healthy baby. Congratulations!

Julie - posted on 09/22/2011

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At 52%, it's safe to say she's taking a 50/50 guess at it. I would lean towards the 1st tech's answer.

Michelle - posted on 09/22/2011

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Weren't looking for sex. We were required by insurance to verify lung development to induce before 40 weeks due to mother's diabetes.

Sherri - posted on 09/22/2011

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With an amnio it should have been 100% inclusive whether it was a boy or a girl anyways.

Michelle - posted on 09/22/2011

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1st child would not turn around for anything to ever be able to be seen. 2nd child, during amniocentesis that was done at 38 weeks. Doctor who had been delivering babies for like 30 years plus told me I was going to have what looked to be an 8 to 8.5 pound baby boy. Young ultra sound tech didn't dispute the weight, but did say, that it was not a boy, it was a girl. SHE came in this world one week later at 9.6 pounds. I joked with the doctor that maybe he needed to relearn his math. There is no guarantee that techs or docs will be right. In the end, does it really matter as long as Mom and Baby are healthy.

Amanda - posted on 09/22/2011

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Girl



http://0.tqn.com/d/pregnancy/1/0/g/Y/3/0...



Boy



http://0.tqn.com/d/pregnancy/1/0/j/Y/3/0...



Im a little confused on why people think the cord can be mistaken for the penis? Just how big are your babies penis'??? By the first to photos you can clearly see why techs can make mistakes. This is why they tell you that they can never be 100%



Erect Penis (ultrsound of a baby not porn LOL)



http://0.tqn.com/d/pregnancy/1/0/q/d/3/0...



3D US of a girl



http://0.tqn.com/d/pregnancy/1/0/l/V/3/0...



US of the cord



http://hcp.obgyn.net/image/image_gallery...

Sonya - posted on 09/22/2011

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Don't believe anything they tell you. I was told I was having a 9.5lb girl and I had an 11lb 6 oz boy...

Alycia - posted on 09/22/2011

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I had a family member who kept trying to find out the sex of her baby. Sure enough, that baby always had its legs crossed or a hand over the area so they couldn't tell. Long story short, she had to wait until the baby was born to find out that she was having a girl. Just think they didn't have the technology that long ago to know what people were having. It's still a new technology but it's still very cool!

Patt - posted on 09/22/2011

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Have they ruled out the possibility of twins? It is conceivable they are both right. Still, a lot depends on the cooperative nature of the child. Some will flaunt their "manhood" others may be a bit more circumspect.

Kristen - posted on 09/21/2011

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I actually work in the field of xray, no I'm not an accredited sonographer but have worked with it and around it. The more experienced tech the more they've seen and can give you a more precise prediction. At your 19 week us they can tell the sex of the baby but I believe the sex is usually more accurate at 22 weeks. The first sonographer could have mistaken the cord for a penis. Three lines in the private area is usally a pretty good indicator of girl. The second sonographer that you had sounds fairly young and might have just recieved their sonography license or since they were subbing for the day they probably just don't see or do enough to make an accurate prediction. You can always call your doctors office and ask for the results given by the Radiologist.

Connie - posted on 09/21/2011

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I am very emotional when it comes to ultra sound techs, when I went in for my ultra sound we didn't want to know the sex of the baby but we did want to know if the baby was healthy. Our oldest son is special needs and we wanted to know what to expect. After my ultra sound I was in the waiting room of my dr. office and the tech came out and told me in front of all the other patients that my baby had downs syndrome, as you can imagine this was very upsetting for me and as it turns out was not true. The ultra sound tech had many years of experienc but was very unprofessional and very wrong, causing us months of needless stress. Not saying not to trust them, just don't expect that an ultra sound or the tech are correct.

Alexandra - posted on 09/21/2011

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There is a way for you to know 100%, if the baby is in a good position: 3D ultrasound! It is a bit pricy but worth the price. Do a search on the internet, most probably you can do it not far from home, these 3D ultrasounds are being done everywhere nowadays. And it is 100%, you can see a vagina or a penis for sure.

Grandma - posted on 09/21/2011

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Why are you listening to an US tech??? The doctor should make these determinations.at the right time and with much more experience. Besides, I thought it was totally unethical for a technician in any field to pass medical opinions of their own on to patients. I would be talking to my doctor ASAP.

Stifler's - posted on 09/21/2011

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It depends on the ultrasound person. The one I went to was right both times. With the second I had a 37 week scan so it was obvious Renae was a girl.

Emily - posted on 09/21/2011

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Well who knows. :) I was 9 weeks pregnant for 3 weeks. Then they thought she was late becuase of her size so I was induced only to find out she was 2 weeks early.

Rhonda - posted on 09/21/2011

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I was told the hole time I was pregnant the first time I was having a big baby boy. I had a big baby girl. She is now 19. The second time I was told boy and had a boy. He is now 2 yrs old. I think they are getting better. Maybe the first time it was the cord instead of penis. Or it could have been facing weird the second time not being able to get a clear shot of baby.

Alda - posted on 09/21/2011

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Here in the UK some hospitals will tell you the sex, but many won't, because there is such a margin for error. If the umbilical cord lies between the legs for example, it looks like a boy, but it could be a girl. The hospital where I had my anti-natal care will not reveal the sex of the baby. I used to work there and I know how often a scan can be wrong. Even when people pay for private scans it can be wrong. As Michelle said - sometimes it's unmistakably a boy or girl, but that's by no means the norm. My advice would be to buy some neutral clothes (but hey, who said a girl can't be dressed in blue or a boy in pink lol) until you know. Good luck and don't stress, it's not an exact science. Scans have even been known to miss twins, so it's easy enough to get the sex wrong.

Glenda - posted on 09/21/2011

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Just ell them you don't want to know. If you don't care what you have why are you worrying about it.

Sherri - posted on 09/21/2011

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Elizabeth 19wks is certainly not too early. All scans here to determine sex are done at 18wks and as long as you have no other complications that will be your one and only during your entire pregnancy.

[deleted account]

Hi, we were told that, we were having a girl, and for 4 weeks we bought girl things, and told everyone about our little daughter, and then went for another scan, and was told no we are having a boy. it's was a huge shock, but we did have a boy. also i ahve a friend, sara who every one thought was going to be a little michael, until she was born and suprised everyone!

Elizabeth - posted on 09/21/2011

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I think you need to just chill and wait til you can see an experienced tech and get a more definate answer. I've heard its too early to see at 19 weeks anyways so i dont know where she pulled 90% boy out from

Sherri - posted on 09/21/2011

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I was never given a percentage either. I was just asked do you want to know what it is. They haven't been wrong yet.

Louise - posted on 09/21/2011

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The older your baby is the better chance that the scan is right, but if they do not get a clear view then they can not give you 100% answer. My advice is buy neutral colours until the baby is born and then it will be a nice surprise.

September - posted on 09/21/2011

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Oh weird I was never given a % and was just told I was having a boy and I did indeed have a boy. My ultra sound tec told me he's never been wrong so I trusted he was right. If I were you I'd bank on the results you get from the real tech. Congrats on the baby ♥

Michelle - posted on 09/21/2011

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The only one I was 100% sure on was #2. Every time an ultrasound wand came near me he spun around and flashed us his bits!!! There was no mistaking he was a boy.
With my last one the first ultrasound tech wouldn't say but the 2nd one said she was about 80% sure it was a girl. The 2nd lady was older and also had children of her own and she was correct.

I did check about 6 times after I delivered to make sure she was a girl though!!!! After 2 boys I was happy with a girl.

Tamara - posted on 09/21/2011

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Well I know people who have had 90% chance one thing and had the other, I personally finally figured its not a great idea to put a whole bunch of stock in to ultra sounds, unless you get several and they all say the same thing.

Amanda - posted on 09/20/2011

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With the ultra sounds with both my kids they said unless they were at least 80% certain they don't like to tell you, because much less than that they would only be guessing. At 52% she really knows no more than anyone walking down the street would know...you're pregnant and its either a boy or a girl.

I would say the younger girl at your second really didn't know and was taking a wild guess.

If you really want to find out then make an appointment with the other tech. If not wait and see and have a little surprise at the end

Lady Heather - posted on 09/20/2011

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It is always possible for a tech or doctor to be wrong. But umm...52% girl? That's a very odd choice of number.

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