NATHAN SWEEM: The baby's view

12/09/2012 11:52 PM

12/09/2012 11:53 PM

Have you ever seen an ultrasound of a 9-week-old fetus? I don't mean a still photo, or a recorded video played back on TV or something; I mean a real-time, in a doctor's office, live feed of an ultrasound.

The details that the machine can pick up and display on the screen are amazing: arms, legs, head, buttocks, and torso; you can see them all so clearly even though they are so tiny.

The pictures in text books and pregnancy books are very accurate, but to see the ultrasound in person is so much more incredible because you can see the fetus moving.

The technician has to constantly adjust to get a clear picture, because the baby moves around so much. If the baby sits still for a few moments, you can see the little heat beat so rapidly.

It's hard to imagine the baby's perspective. It may be trying to get some rest while the technician pokes and prods its womb. I'm sure you've had the experience when, after having finally found a perfectly comfortable spot in bed, right before you fall asleep, you are unexpectedly disturbed.

NATHAN SWEEM

Merced

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