It is common for midwives and doctors to suggest at least 4 ultrasounds during pregnancy and to use a doppler device to listen to the baby's heartbeat during prenatal care and birth. Yet more and more evidence is piling up that ultrasounds and doppler are not safe.
"During fetal development, neurons of the brain migrate to their correct positions. In a study of 335 mice, the researchers found that exposing pregnant mice to ultrasound waves at frequencies of 6.7 MHz for 30 minutes or more interfered with this normal migration in their fetuses. This interference could potentially result in brain abnormalities such as mental retardation and seizures."
Yale Study Links Prenatal Ultrasound to Brain Damage
“The casual observer might be forgiven for wondering why the medical profession is now involved in the wholesale examination of pregnant patients with machines emanating vastly different powers of energy which is not proven to be harmless to obtain information which is not proven to be of any clinical value by operators who are not certified as competent to perform the operations.” (Buckley 2005)...
The Potential Dangers of Ultrasound
Miscarriage. According to at least three separate studies, pregnant women who received two or more ultrasound scans during pregnancy had an increased risk of miscarriage (Beech 1999). In one of these studies (a large randomized controlled trial from Helsinki) over 9,000 women were divided randomly into two groups: the members of the first group received an ultrasound scan between sixteen and twenty weeks. The members of the second group received no scan. The results of this study revealed that there were twenty miscarriages in the first group after the ultrasound scan, and no miscarriages in the second group (Saari-Kemppainen et al. 1990). According to Beech, pregnant patients are not the only women at risk, however. Physiotherapists who employ ultrasound therapy in their practice(s) are also at an increased risk of spontaneous abortion (Taskinen et al. 1990).
Intra-Uterine Growth Retardation. In one large, randomized, controlled trial conducted in 1993, 1,415 pregnant women received an ultrasound scan at 18, 24, 28, 34, and 38 weeks gestation while the other half of the group, 1,419 pregnant women received only one ultrasound scan at 18 weeks gestation. The alarming results revealed that the group that received multiple scans had a 30% increased risk of delivering an infant with intra-uterine growth retardation (Newnham, J. et al. 1993).
Indications of damage to the developing brain. Studies have shown that prenatal ultrasound can lead to dyslexia, delayed speech development, and an increase in the incidence of left-handedness (Buckley 2005). One specific study examining the effect of ultrasound exposure on pregnant mice found that “...exposure of the embryonic mouse to [ultrasound waves] can affect neuronal migration in the cerebral cortex and thereby prevent some neurons from attaining their final proper position.” How is this study involving mice relevant to human fetuses? The researchers state that “...the principal ultrasound beam characteristics (beam width, time- averaged intensity, and mechanical and thermal indices) used in this study were well within clinical norms for fetal exams.” (Ang, E.S., Jr., et al. 2006).
The Questionable Safety of Prenatal Ultrasound
Here's list of many more links that were provided by Carla Hartley of http://ancientartmidwifery.com. Carla writes:
"* Don't stop researching when you find the answers you want.
* Please remember that there is absolutely no ethical way to PROVE that ultrasound, including dopplers, is safe for the unborn and there will be no funding for studies to prove that this cash cow is dangerous.
* Study the many ways this technology is applied, connect the dots. HOWEVER, Just based on how they respond to it, we need to stop shooting sound waves at babies
Just to be completely honest... I had one ultrasound with one of my babies and cried the whole time....she kept turning her face right and left trying to get away from it but she was trapped. That experience made me more determined than ever to research this topic and share what I find. (I also used a doppler on her several times....she is by far the shortest of my children...none of the rest had any ultrasound exposure.)
Please share this note with your friends. If the actual data that is damning concerning babies doesn't change their minds, maybe just reading about the other uses of the technology would help them connect the dots.
- it cleans rust off of pipes
- it kills sperm
- it heats muscles
- it changes the migratory patterns of whales"
Carla Hartley - Doppler Danger
read Anne Frye's opinion on the topic in Holistic Midwifery