Inconclusive Scan

What is an Inconclusive scan and what happens next?

Following an inconclusive scan finding, your sonographer will have explained to you that you need another scan because he/she has been unable to confirm your baby’s heartbeat.
The sonographer has seen that your pregnancy sac is in the womb but is too small to conclusively confirm a baby with a heartbeat.
We understand that this is difficult for you and that you will naturally be feeling very anxious. The UK has very important and specific guidelines about re-scanning women in early pregnancy. This is to ensure that you receive accurate and clear information and the right standard of care.

The 2 main reasons for you needing to have a rescan to assess your early pregnancy are:

  • Your pregnancy is earlier than your dates would suggest. You may know precisely the date of the 1st day of your last period, but it is impossible to know when you ovulated and therefore impossible to precisely date your pregnancy until your baby can be measured by a sonographer.
  • There is a problem with the development of the pregnancy.

Vaginal scanning has allowed the sonographer to see the detail of your tiny pregnancy much more clearly, but a scan can only be accurate within 5 days and so dating a pregnancy between 4 and 6 weeks is not as accurate as after 6 weeks of pregnancy. Your second vaginal scan in 2 weeks will be able to confirm any change. Trans-vaginal scanning is recommended to all ladies pre 10 weeks for more accurate diagnostic results.

We understand following an inconclusive scan result the waiting is hard, but it is important to allow 2 weeks so that the scan can confirm any change conclusively. The sonographer is only able to tell you what she can see today and should have explained this to you.

If you have been prescribed any medicines, please continue to take them or talk with your doctor if you have any concerns.

If you wish to discuss your scan findings in more detail please contact your local clinic to speak to a member of the team.