Is It A Boy Or A Girl?
Many of us chose to have a sonogram of our baby to not only see how well he or she is doing but also to see if we can't have a peek at whether our baby will be a he or a she. But just how accurate are ultrasounds? Registered Diagnostic Medical Sonographer Maureen McGee Karchner, MBA, RDMS, tells us. Your question
How accurate can you be when telling the baby's gender by ultrasound?
The expert answers
The person doing your ultrasound is the only person who can accurately answer this question specifically for you. However, it should be very accurate (close to 100 percent). The best time to determine gender is around 20 weeks gestation. By 20 weeks the fetus is big enough to see the anatomy clearly, yet small enough to move around within the uterus to allow a clear view between the legs.
There are a host of factors that come in to play when trying to determine gender by ultrasound. The amount of amniotic fluid around the baby, the position of the baby and the thickness of the maternal abdominal wall all play an important role. Gender is determined by simply looking between the baby's legs. So, how accurate the determination is really depends on how well the sonographer can see between the baby's legs.
An experienced sonographer, a good amount of amniotic fluid, a patient with a thin abdominal wall and a baby with its legs wide open create the ideal environment for determining the gender. Things that can make it difficult are obesity, decreased amniotic fluid, fetal position and fetal activity. For example, if you are overweight and the baby isn't opening its legs very wide, it may be impossible to accurately determine the gender.
The gender is determined by seeing either male or female genitalia. The absence of male genitalia does not alone determine that the baby is female. The sonographer who does your ultrasound should be able to tell you how confident he/she is in his/her determination of the gender. Only your sonographer will know how well he/she saw the genitalia.