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In rare cases, the date of coitus is known, and this may be useful in calculating the length of pregnancy.For related information, see Medscape's Pregnancy Resource Center.While some studies have found no significant difference in the rate of induction between women who have a first trimester scan and women who have both a first and second trimester scan .The analysis was therefore unable to conclusively determine whether the benefits of the recommendation would be likely to outweigh the costs.Gestational age (GA) refers to the length of pregnancy after the first day of the last menstrual period (LMP) and is usually expressed in weeks and days. Conceptional age (CA) is the true fetal age and refers to the length of pregnancy from the time of conception.This terminology does vary geographically and over time, and it may need clarification if not explicitly defined in relevant articles.In addition to having appropriate training and accreditation, it is important that caseload is sufficient to maintain skills.
The study found that the earlier the ultrasound assessment in pregnancy (preferably between 10 and 12 weeks), the more accurate the prediction of date of birth.
The analysis aimed to balance the costs of additional scans undertaken against the savings resulting from: The analysis was limited by a lack of data on privately funded ultrasounds and those carried out in hospitals and therefore could only identify implications for Medicare expenditure.
Data limitations also meant that the analysis had to rely on a range of assumptions and on the literature, which is inconsistent in some areas.
The date of the first documented positive pregnancy test and the beta-human chorionic gonadotropin (b HCG) level may help ascertain the minimum gestational age.
In women who conceived following assisted reproduction techniques, the date of embryo transfer is known and may date the pregnancy accurately.
The first 2 are subject to considerable error and should only be used when ultrasonography facilities are not available.