637 4060 ADDRESS: 60 Mount Street Lower, Grand Canal Dock, Dublin 2 info@merrionultrasound.ie

20+ Week Scan Dublin

20 Week Scan (ideally 21 weeks)

20/21-22 Week Pregnancy Scan Costs

The 20 week pregnancy scan includes photographs and a computerised report. Your sonographer will answer any questions you may have.

At Merrion Ultrasound, we recommend 21 weeks for the best imagery for this stage of your pregnancy.

21 – 22 weeks – €200



What Is Involved?

Early pregnancy scans will:

  • confirm the presence of the baby’s heartbeat
  • calculate the gestational age
  • look for multiples (twins, triplets etc)
  • site the pregnancy
  • to confirm that the pregnancy is in the uterus


42″ Ultrasound Scan Screen

The ultrasound is available for you to view on a 42” screen which is located on the wall at the end of the ultrasound couch. This allows you to view the images produced by the transducer. At this stage in pregnancy it may not be easy for you to make out what you are seeing on screen but the sonographer will explain what you are looking at.



20 Week Scan in Pregnancy - What You Need to Know

A 20-week pregnancy scan is a diagnostic abdominal scan used to check for certain conditions in the unborn baby. The scan is usually carried out around the 20th week of pregnancy but may be done earlier if there is a concern about the baby’s health. This scan is also called an anatomy survey scan.

During the scan, the sonographer will check the baby’s anatomy and measure the size of the head, abdominal circumference, and femur (thigh bone). In some cases, a blood test may also be carried out to screen for specific conditions such as Down syndrome.

The 20-week scan is generally considered to be a routine part of prenatal care, but some parents opt to have it done for reasons other than medical necessity. Trimester screening tests are non-invasive tests that can identify whether an unborn baby has a higher risk of certain conditions such as Down syndrome.

These tests are optional, and the decision to have one is a personal choice. Ultimately, the choice of whether or not to have a 20-week scan is one that every parent must make based on their individual circumstances.

20 Week Scan Dublin 1

How should I prepare for my 20-week ultrasound scan?

Pregnancy is an amazing time! There’s so much to learn and experience as your body changes and grows to accommodate your new little bundle of joy. One of the most exciting milestones during pregnancy is the 20-week ultrasound scan. This anatomy scan is a great way to check on your baby’s development and get a sneak peek at what they’ll look like when they’re born.

Here are a few things you can do to prepare for your 20-week ultrasound scan:

  • First, make sure you drink plenty of water before your appointment. This will help ensure that the sonographer can get a clear view of your baby. The sonographers ask patients not to empty their bladders before their scan as it allows for better ultrasound images.
  • Secondly, try to relax and take deep breaths. The more relaxed you are, the easier it will be for the sonographer to do their job.
  • Lastly, be prepared to hear your baby’s heartbeat and see them moving around on the screen. It’s an amazing experience that you’ll never forget!

What role does amniotic fluid play in the 20-week scan?

Amniotic fluid is the protective liquid found around the baby in the womb. It helps to cushion and support the baby, as well as provide nutrients and oxygen. Amniotic fluid also plays an important role in the 20-week scan.

This is a routine ultrasound scan that is used to check for any abnormalities in the baby. One of the things that the sonographer will look at is the amniotic fluid volume. They will assess whether there is too much or too little fluid around the baby.

Too much amniotic fluid can indicate a problem with the pregnancy, while too little fluid can put the baby at risk of dehydration. Therefore, amniotic fluid is an important indicator of fetal health, and it plays a vital role in the 20-week scan.

20 Week Scan Dublin 3

What can you expect at the 20-week scan?

Having a 20-week scan is an exciting moment for any future mum. It’s a chance to see your baby for the first time and get a glimpse of what they’ll look like when they’re born. The scan will also give you important information about your baby’s development and check that they’re in the proper position.

During the scan, the sonographer will look at the placenta, which provides vital nutrients and oxygen to the baby. They’ll also check that the baby’s head is in the correct position and that its internal organs are developing normally. Finally, you’ll get to see your baby appear on the screen. They may be wriggling around, but it’s an amazing experience to see them for the first time.

What will be assessed in a 20-week scan?

Measurements :

Standard measurements are taken during ultrasound scans at 20 weeks to help diagnose certain conditions.

The standard measurements are:

– the biparietal diameter (BPD),

– the head circumference (HC),

– the abdominal circumference (AC), and

– the femur length (FL).

These measurements are used to calculate the baby’s estimated weight, which is important for prenatal diagnosis and Fetal medicine. The measurements are also used to assess the risk of certain conditions, such as Down syndrome.

Ultrasound scans at 20 weeks are usually routine and low-risk, but they can be stressful for some parents-to-be. It’s important to remember that most babies are born healthy and happy. If you’re concerned about your scan, speak to your midwife or GP. They will be able to put your mind at ease.

Blood flow in the umbilical cord (umbilical artery) :

The 20-week scan is a fetal medicine ultrasound that assesses the anatomy of the baby. It is also known as the mid-pregnancy or anomaly scan. The scan is usually done when the baby is between 18 and 21 weeks old.

During the scan, the recording devices are used to create pictures of your baby’s body tissue. The abdominal wall is transparent, so the cord and blood vessels can be seen clearly. The umbilical artery is one of the vessels that can be seen in the cord. The umbilical artery carries blood from the baby to the placenta.

The umbilical artery is important because it provides nutrients and oxygen to the baby. The 20-week scan is used to verify the blood flow in the umbilical cord. If there is a problem with the blood flow, it can be treated before the baby is born.

20 Week Scan Dublin 2

Baby’s rhythm and heart rate :

The 20-week scan is a key appointment in pregnancy. This is the halfway point in gestation, and it’s when the medical team can get a really good look at the baby. They will check the heart rate and rhythm, and examine the structure of the brain, spine, kidneys and abdominal organs.

In the vast majority of cases, everything is absolutely fine. But if there is an abnormality, it can often be picked up at this stage. The 20-week scan is therefore a vital part of the examination process during pregnancy.

The baby’s position :

At the 20-week mark, your baby will have a detailed anatomy scan to check for any birth defects or chromosomal abnormalities. This is also when you’ll be able to find out the sex of your baby. The ultrasound tech will take measurements of your baby’s head, abdomen, and femur (thigh bone) to ensure that they’re developing properly.

They will also check the position of your baby’s placenta and amniotic fluid levels. All of this information helps to ensure that your baby is healthy and on track for a full-term delivery. If anything appears to be abnormal, you may be referred for further testing or monitoring.

While most birth defects can’t be treated before birth, knowing about them in advance can help you prepare for what’s to come. In some cases, early intervention can make all the difference in the world. So don’t hesitate to ask questions and get as much information as you can at your 20-week scan.

The anatomy of the baby:

The 20-week scan is a routine ultrasound examination performed on pregnant women to verify the anatomy of the baby. The scan is usually performed with the expectant mother lying on her back with a full bladder, as this helps detected the baby more easily.

During the scan, the sonographer will use ultrasound to determine the baby’s size and position, as well as to assess the development of the brain, heart, and other organs. In addition, the sex of the baby can often be determined at this stage.

The 20-week scan is an important milestone in pregnancy, and it can offer valuable information about the health of both the mother and the baby.


Book An Early Pregnancy Scan

The first trimester scan is usually undertaken between six and twelve weeks of gestational age. It’s better to leave this scan until after seven weeks if it all possible as we’ll get the most accurate information from it. The reasons that we undertake this scan is to determine if the baby’s heartbeat is present, how many babies are present in the uterus and to give you an accurate estimated date of delivery. It’s also a very important time to do the scan if there’s any fear that the pregnancy might be located in one of the fallopian tubes, also called an ectopic pregnancy. So a scan at this gestational age will determine where the pregnancy is sited.

20 Week Pregnancy Scans FAQs

What is an anatomy scan?

The anatomy scan is normally carried out between weeks 21 and 22 and it is considered a level 2 ultrasound. Essentially, this is a more detailed ultrasound. The sonographer should be able to tell you the sex of your baby if you wish. She/he will take a number of measurements during the scan in order to check that your baby is growing normally

How long does it take for an anatomy scan?

An anatomy scan normally takes between 30 to 45 minutes to perform, and this depends on how your baby is lying and how much she cooperates.

What is a Level 2 ultrasound?

A Level 2 ultrasound is a scan that goes into a more detailed analysis of the fetus. The fetal anatomy and its development are evaluated during the scan which typically takes between 30 to 45 minutes to perform.

What can I expect at my Anatomy Survey scan?

At your anatomy survey pregnancy scan, you can expect that the sonographer will check the following:

  • to determine the position of the baby
  • to determine the location of the placenta
  • to check the amniotic fluid around the baby
  • to monitor the growth of the baby to ensure that it is growing normally


How should I prepare for my anatomy survey scan?

This scan is also referred to as the routine scan or anatomy scan. This scan essentially examines the baby’s anatomy in a detailed manner and is carried out between 21 and 22 gestational weeks. The sonographers ask patients not to empty their bladders before their scan as it allows for better ultrasound images  When you attend the Merrion Ultrasound Clinic for an anatomy survey scan, it is quite possible that you may have been at the clinic for an early pregnancy scan, but if you have not been with us before then you will fill out a registration form when you arrive.

You will await your sonographer in the waiting room. Your sonographer will bring you to the ultrasound room and confirm your details before performing the ultrasound scan. Lots of the time your sonographer will be examining anatomical details of your baby which are not obvious to you. The sonographer will check all your baby’s organs and take measurements and images. She will check your baby’s face, baby’s spine, baby’s abdominal wall, baby’s heart, kidneys and stomach. Your baby’s arms legs, hands and feet will also be checked. Measurements of the baby’s head circumference, abdominal circumference and femur will be taken.

As well as checking how your baby is growing the sonographer will check the placenta, the umbilical cord and the amniotic fluid. The team at Merrion Ultrasound wish to ensure that your visit is as relaxing as possible and we welcome any questions, so please do not hesitate to ask your sonographer any questions you may have.

Can I ask to find out what gender my baby is at the Anatomy Scan?

At around 19 weeks it can be possible to tell the sex of the baby at this scan, but it is not always. The baby may not be in a favourable position to determine the gender. However, if you would like to know the gender of your baby please inform your sonographer at the beginning of your ultrasound. Determining the sex of the baby is not always an easy job as we are depending on the baby to be in a position that allows us to visualise the genital area and the baby does not always oblige.

What will happen if a problem is suspected during the anatomy survey scan?

If at the time of scan a problem is suspected, you will be told at that stage that there may be a problem. A full discussion of the problem may require you to come back for further scanning and a discussion with one of our fetal medicine specialists. This can usually be organised within 24 hours if the problem is deemed urgent. Most problems that need repeat scanning are not serious and approximately 15% of scans will need to be repeated for one reason or another. At the end of your scan you will be given images of your baby and a detailed report on the findings of your scan. A copy of this report will be sent to your obstetrician and/or GP as required.

To book an Anatomy Survey Pregnancy Scan please call (01) 663 5060 or use the Make a Booking online form. This scan is from 21 weeks to 22 weeks. Merrion Ultrasound is conveniently located in Dublin 2 and offers ultrasound for all stages of pregnancy including early pregnancy scans, nuchal scans, anatomy and growth scans. Merrion Ultrasound is open to all women not just those attending the National Maternity Hospital.


Nuchal Translucency

12-14 weeks


Anatomy Survey

21-22 weeks


Later Dating

10-17 weeks


Gender Scan

19 weeks onwards


Growth & Well Being

22 weeks onwards


Post Dates & Liquor

40 weeks onwards

See Video With Prof. Shane Higgins


What Our Patients Say

Gráinne Macken

This is my second visit to Merrion Fetal, I was very pleased on both occasions. Lovely quiet waiting room, appointment was on time. The 20-week scan is very detailed we enjoyed watching our baby on the large TV screen. We got some beautiful photos. The nurse was very pleasant and talked us through all the measurements and anatomy. I would highly recommend this scanning clinic.”

Áine Gibney

I had the best experience at the Merrion Fetal Health clinic for my 20-week big scan. The staff were so friendly and so nice and the lovely lady who did my ultrasound scan was amazing. She was so thoroughgoing to absolutely everything and gave me such reassurance on how my baby was growing and developing. I would recommend any Mother to be to attend here if you are looking for a comfortable, reassuring and super pleasant experience.”

Linda O'Sullivan

Highly recommend! We had an early scan due to a little scare at the start of pregnancy and then another at 12 weeks to make sure all was good again. Helen who was scanning on both days was fantastic. We felt totally relaxed and un-rushed while she took her time finding the best angle of baby to get us the clearest pictures as keepsakes all while making sure everything was perfect with baby. She reassured us throughout and I can honestly say it was the best money we ever spent getting both scans done.

Please let Helen know we are 18 weeks now and flying along Highly recommend!



About The Clinic

Merrion Fetal Health Pregnancy Scans Dublin 2

About The Consultants

Dr. Rhona Mahony

About The Team

Pregnancy scans lead sonographer at Merrion Fetal Health

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18 weeks pregnancy scan facial profile Merrion Fetal Health

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