Anomaly Pregnancy Scans (19-24 weeks)

Description 19-24 week Anomaly scan (mandatory)
An anomaly pregnancy scan forms an integral part of antenatal care takes a close look at your baby’s developmental structure. Every pregnancy carries a risk of abnormality. The sonographer will perform in-depth anatomy screening of the following:

Neural Tube- intracranial anatomy, size & shape of the skull and the spinal column.
Abdomen-The abdominal organs and bowel loops are assessed.
Cardiac- The diaphragm, heart and great vessels are examined.
Facial Morphology- The face is examined in 3 planes to assess the nasal bone, lips, orbits & jaw bones.
Long Bones- examination of the bones including the ribs and chest cavity.
Placenta – to determine where it is lying in your uterus and as well as the thickness and structure.
Amniotic fluid- to assess the amount of fluid.
Umbilical cord- 3 vessels and possible the blood flow characteristics.

Genetic Abnormalities/Down’s Syndrome- certain markers can be picked up which can increase the risk for genetic abnormalities. A scan on its own cannot exclude or confirm a genetic disorder. A combined risk is calculated based on maternal age, blood tests and scan results. Ask us about NIPT blood tests.
The scan can predict morbidity, life incompatibility, necessity of post-natal support or ultrasound surveillance.

We perform anomaly scans between 19 and 24 weeks of pregnancy because visualization is best at this stage.

There is no need to have a full bladder at this stage. Bring all previous records and blood tests. Inform the sonographer if you had a previous abnormal or high risk pregnancy and if anyone in the family has a congenital abnormality.

This procedure is done during a routine ultrasound examination. The sonographer will perform anatomical screening of your baby. A normal scan does not guarantee a normal baby. Some abnormalities are not seen on ultrasound and some may be overlooked due to technical limitations. The results are immediate and a report will be given to you for your doctor, midwife or clinic.
See “TERMS & CONDITIONS’ and QUESTIONS & ANSWERS’ for more information.

Interesting facts
* The foetus is covered in downy hair called lanugo, eyebrows and hair is formed.
* The foetus swallows, blinks, yawns and moves frequently.
* The nostrils open and it responds to sound.
* The vocal cords can function but without air cannot cry.
* It weighs approximately 5-700g and about 25-35cm long.

The sonographer will talk you through the examination to familiarize you with the scan and then explain the results to you. You are welcome to raise any question or concerns that you might have. The results are immediate and a written report will be given to you to take to your doctor, midwife or clinic. Remember to continue having monthly scans to ensure that baby remains healthy.

2D-R950 or 4D-R1100 or HD-R1200 (The 4D/HD scan is advised for better detail)
Early facial character, muscle and soft tissue is visible on 4D/HD Imaging at this stage.


  1. Detailed Anatomy screening (Mandatory)
  2. Foetal Measurements
  3. Gestational Age
  4. Estimated Due Date
  5. Gender screening (position dependent 99% success rate)
  6. Diagnostic report
  7. Live DVD – R50, USB-R150.00 (still images & clips), CD- R50 (still images)

Follow up scan after anomaly- in one month- foetal growth/wellness scan

What abnormalities can be diagnosed with ultrasound scans?

  • Neural tube defects: hydrocephalus, anencephaly, encephalocoele, spina bifida, meningocoele, cystic hygroma, sacrococcygeal teratoma, microcephaly, holoprosencephaly, sirenomelia, sacral agenesis,
  • Cardiac: ectopia cordis, pericardial effusion, VSD, hypoplastic heart, great vessel transposition, myocardial tumours, aortic stenosis, arrhythmia,
  • Abdominal wall: gastrochisis, omphalocoele, ascites, duodenal/jejuna atresia, diaphragmatic hernia, cloacal bladder, hepatomegaly, splenomegaly, ascites,
  • Renal tract: hydronehrosis, polycystic kidney, unilateral kidney, megacystis,
  • Genitalia: ambiguous genitalia, ovarian cy
    What abnormalities cannot be diagnosed with ultrasound scans?
    Autism, cerebral palsy, deafness, blindness and genetic disorders such as Down’s Syndrome if there are no associated markers. Certain anomalies manifest later and certain anomalies are obscured from technical limitation. Therefore a normal scan cannot guarantee a normal baby at birth. Due to technical challenges, abnormalities can be overlooked or difficult to confirm.
    What is an anomaly pregnancy scan?
    An anomaly scan is a detailed anatomical survey of the baby’s bone, soft tissue and organ development. In addition to routine measurements, the scan investigates the possibility of structural birth defects and signs of genetic disorders. The results are immediate and a diagnostic report will be issued.
    Are an anomaly pregnancy scans accurate?Ultrasound is operator dependent. An experienced, skilled operator is likely to produce diagnostic accuracy but ultrasound cannot diagnose 100% of congenital abnormalities. Some abnormalities are too subtle, there may be technical limitations and some disorders cannot be seen on ultrasound at all.

What if the scan detects a problem?
Such cases will be offered strict confidentiality and referral management. We work alongside a network of Fetal Specialists, Gynaecologists, Public Hospitals, Pathologists, General Practitioners, and Midwives to function as a team in providing effective obstetric care.
Depending on the findings the parent/s will be offered the following:

  • Referral to a foetal specialist or gynaecologist.
  • Detailed report to the antenatal clinic or midwife.
  • Referral with further investigation via an amniocentesis, cordocentesis, chorionic villis sampling (CVS).
  • Referral to a geneticist for counselling and management.
  • Minor abnormalities will need ultrasound surveillance and possibly Doppler of the umbilical arteries.
  • Severe abnormalities or incompatibility with life may be offered a termination by the specialist.

Anomalies:scrotal hydrocoele, cliteromegaly, hypospadia, hydrometrocolpos,

  • Limbs:micromelia(dwarfism), polydactyly, syndactyly, talipes(club foot), thanatophoric dysplasia, osteogenises imperfecta, IUGR(growth deformity)
  • Facial: cleft palate/lip, micrognathia, proboscis, Cyclops, hypertelorism, hypotelorism,
  • Twins:co-twin demise, IUGR, TTS, conjoined(Siamese twins), acardiac monster, stuck twin phenomenon

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