Expectant parents can see their unborn baby in remarkable detail thanks to the private 4D scanning service available at the Royal United Hospitals (RUH) Bath NHS Foundation Trust.

A 4D scan uses ultrasound, just like the 12 and 20 week scan, but combines sections of 2D images to create a 3D image which you can see moving in real time – adding the fourth dimension.

The 4D scan is a paid-for service and can be performed on pregnant women who are between 24 and 34 weeks. It enables parents to take a more detailed look at their baby, as they can see their facial features, hands and feet.
Patricia Newton, Advanced Practitioner Sonographer at the RUH explained,
“A routine 12 and 20 week NHS ultrasound scan is important for checking the baby’s anatomy in detail and is available free to all expectant mums. The 4D scan is an optional and additional service for pregnant women and their families, we have packages starting from £100 which provides 10 images on a DVD and three printed photographs. Some parents find the 4D scan insightful and an opportunity to see their baby’s face as it can feel like a long time between seeing the baby at the 20 week scan and when their baby arrives.”

As with all ultrasound scans undertaken at the RUH, the 4D scan service is provided by qualified and experienced RUH sonographers in the Princess Anne Wing at the hospital. Appointments are available in the week from Tuesday to Thursday, 4-8pm and Saturdays 9-5pm (subject to availability). Those who would like to book a 4D scan can contact the Maternity Screening department on 01225 821503.

Patricia added, “Parents have told us that they value having the 4D scan performed by the same fully qualified team they have seen throughout their pregnancy. We are delighted to see proceeds generated by the 4D scans invested back into the RUH so we can continue to further improve our maternity services.”

For more information about the 4D baby scans, availability and the 4D packages available visit www.ruh.nhs.uk and search for baby 4D scan. Alternatively, parents can call the screening team directly on 01225 821503 (9am-12noon, Monday to Friday) to ask questions or book a scan.