The Complete Guide to Viability Scan

A viability scan is an ultrasound scan that provides you with detailed pictures of the developing fetus or fetuses and you can also listen to the heartbeat of the fetus.

A viability scan can confirm if your pregnancy is progressing normally or not.

This can assure the gestating mothers.

  • who had experienced ectopic pregnancies or miscarriages before?
  • And also to new mothers who are experiencing pain or bleeding.

A viability scan can be done in your regular doctor's office. Prenatal ultrasound provides a more detailed scan.

A viability scan can determine the date of pregnancy accurately. This is relevant if you cannot recall the date of your last period, have an irregular menstrual cycle, etc. By measuring the size of the fetus the date of delivery can be calculated.

Viability scanning can determine if you are having multiple pregnancies. Hence, helping you alter your nutrition and care plan.

Viability scanning methods are:

  • Transabdominal Ultrasound Scanning
  • Transvaginal Ultrasound Scanning

Transabdominal Ultrasound Scanning

The viability scan via transabdominal ultrasound scanning is painless and non-invasive. You will not experience any discomfort. To undergo the abdominal ultrasound you must have a full bladder so drink lots of water before going for the scan.

The doctor will expose your abdomen and cover it will a little conductive gel for the ultrasound. During the procedure, alert the doctor if you feel too much pressure being exerted on your abdomen. The doctor will be gentler with the transducer.

Transvaginal Ultrasound Scanning

The viability scan via transvaginal ultrasound scanning is painless but will cause a bit of discomfort and embarrassment. To undergo the transvaginal ultrasound you must have an empty bladder so, the doctor will ask you to visit the bathroom before the scan.

You may experience slight discomfort during the insertion of the probe. The probe is covered by a sterile, lubricated condom. Then inserted in the vagina just around 6 – 8 cm inside. The probe is rotated to transmit images of the scan.

The Viability Scan provides various data that help to:

  • Check for any internal bleeding
  • Check the location in the uterus and if there are symptoms of ectopic pregnancy
  • Check to ensure that the baby is alive
  • Check whether it is a single or multiple pregnancies
  • Check for any early abnormalities in the baby
  • Determine the accurate date of pregnancy
  • Provide the Estimated Due Date or EDD

An early viability scan does not harm the baby. But it may provide some unfortunate news by showing that:

  • It is an ectopic pregnancy.
  • The embryo has no heartbeat.
  • The sac is seen but no visible embryo

In this case, you have to perform a further ultrasound after a couple of weeks to identify if the pregnancy is viable.

In these cases counselling, further testing and appropriate treatment will be required. And do not be despondent. Nowadays extensive medical technology can deal with all sorts of medical issues. You will be provided with compassionate care by the inter-professional team.

Hence you must consider carefully before having the viability scan.


A viability Scan is an early pregnancy scan done via ultrasound examination. It mainly helps confirm that the baby is doing fine and everything is normal. This helps you relax your worries regarding your unborn baby.

If you are pregnant and want to do a viability scan then it is recommended to consult a doctor at the earliest opportunity.

Request an appointment at Apollo Cradle, DELHI-NCR - Chirag Enclave. Call 1860-500-1066 to book an appointment.

1. What is Viability Scan?

A viability scan is an ultrasound scan used to determine early pregnancy progress. It also helps check whether it is a single or multiple pregnancies

2. How is the viability scan done?

The viability scan is an ultrasound examination performed through your abdomen. Sometimes transvaginal scan may be required. You will be required to drink a lot of water. This helps so that the uterus is visible during the test.

3. Who requires viability scans the most?

The viability scan is most important for
1. Women who have experienced previous miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy.
2. Women who are experiencing bleeding or pain during early pregnancy.
3. Women who had IVF treatment are anxious about the developing baby.

4. Is the viability scan painful?

A viability scan is not painful but the transvaginal ultrasound may feel a bit uncomfortable or embarrassing.

5. Can you hear the baby’s heartbeat during the viability scan?

Yes, you can hear the heartbeat even during the 6th week of pregnancy. Doing the viability scan during the 8th week you will be able to see more.

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