Study Raises New Questions About Fetal Ultrasounds: Research
A new study suggesting that first-trimester fetal ultrasound may contribute to the severity of autism symptoms heightens a dilemma facing obstetricians: How to halt the widespread overuse of fetal ultrasound without scaring women away from this important medical procedure.

The study, published Sept. 1 in the journal Autism Research, is the latest in a series of highly limited studies that raise questions about the safety of fetal ultrasound. Some research is based on animal studies—fetal chicks and rats, for instance—that may not be relevant to humans. The latest study, based on the medical histories of 2,644 families with autistic children, relies on parents’ reports of their ultrasound experiences rather than actual records.