Remember when expectant parents would go around showing off their ultrasound pictures to 350 or more of their family, friends, co-workers, neighbors, and old classmates? Neither do I.
Yet on any given day I can see 3-D ultrasound pictures posted by Facebook friends I only vaguely remember from school. Awe, it’s a picture of your uterus, you shouldn't have. No, really, you shouldn't have!
Socially speaking, this trend is downright disturbing, especially when the mother-to-be makes it her profile picture. Now her fetus is available for the entire world to see, regardless of her privacy settings. These are the same women who will later post status updates throughout their entire labor. I'm not kidding.
Don’t get me wrong, diagnostically speaking, there have been some remarkable advancements in ultrasound technology that offer tremendous advantages for obstetricians and their patients. Take the latest addition to Royal Philips Electronics’ ClearVue family, for example.
The ClearVue 650 includes 4-D technology and Tissue Doppler Imaging to allow clinicians to quickly inform patients about any rare or complex heart abnormalities in the fetus. It also produces clear images to more accurately determine gestation age, date of conception, and other important information about the fetus’ well-being and heart health.
I’m not saying expectant parents should not be excited about their keepsake ultrasound pictures. I’m not even saying they shouldn't share them with close family and friends. But these are intimate images that, in my humble opinion, are better shared offline.