The study was performed to investigate any associations between routine ultrasonography during pregnancy and subsequent reduced vision and/or hearing among children.
A follow-up was carried out of primary school children born to women who took part in two randomized, controlled trials of routine ultrasonography during pregnancy. Of 2428 eligible singletons, 2161 (89%) were followed up with a parental questionnaire and with information from maternal and child health centers.
Parents assessed vision and hearing in their children and reported their observations in questionnaires. At the age of 7 years, the children were also screened with bilateral visual acuity tests and pure tone audiometry at public maternal and child health centers.
No significant differences between ultrasound-screened children and their controls were found in the parental assessment of vision or hearing. The objective tests did not show any significant differences between children in the two groups with regard to visual acuity or hearing.
The risk of reduced vision or hearing was no greater for children of mothers who had been offered routine ultrasonography during pregnancy than for those whose mothers had not received that offer. Copyright © 1992 International Society of Ultrasound in Obstetrics and Gynecology