Doppler FAQ

HOW DO I PLACE AN ORDER?

You may order a doppler by clicking on the Order Online button or link on this site, or by calling the toll-free number, 1-866-523-6626, or by e-mailing us at info@fetalassure.ca , in which case the required information is: your name, mailing address, home phone number, and credit card number with expiry date. We will confirm receipt of your e-mail order as soon as we receive it.

WHAT METHODS OF PAYMENT ARE ACCEPTABLE?

We accept Visa, Mastercard and American Express. All orders must be guaranteed by a credit card, but can be paid by prepaid or post-dated cheques.  Local customers can also choose to pay by cash or credit card.

HOW SOON WILL I RECEIVE MY DOPPLER?

Your doppler should arrive within 2 business days, especially if you live in a major centre such as Toronto, or in the Eastern provinces. Smaller centres and rural areas can generally expect to receive their dopplers within 3 business days. If your doppler has not arrived within the expected time, please contact us to begin a trace to locate the doppler, and to change your billing date to the actual date you received your doppler.

I LIVE IN THE OTTAWA/GATINEAU AREA, CAN I OPT TO PICK UP MY DOPPLER IN PERSON?

Yes, local customers can pick up their dopplers in person, both to avoid shipping charges, and the wait.  You may still use the online order form to submit your order, and choose local pick up instead of a shipping option.  You will be contacted by e-mail or phone to arrange both a time and day that is convenient.

HOW EARLY CAN I EXPECT TO FIND MY BABY’S HEARTBEAT?

In most cases, fetal heartbeats can be detected between 10-12 weeks. In more rare cases, they can be found as early as 8-9 weeks. However, it is recommended that most women wait until the 10-12 week range since it can be very difficult to locate the fetal heartbeat earlier.

WHAT IF I CAN’T FIND MY BABY’S HEARTBEAT?

First of all, don’t panic. Especially if you are still in the first trimester, fetal heartbeats can still be difficult to locate from one time to another. Once located, do try to remember the exact location and begin by looking in the same general area. Try waiting a few hours, or until the next day and try again. One "trick" that might help is a full bladder, since your bladder lifts your uterus up it can make the heartbeat easier to find. Move the probe slowly, since the smaller the baby, the easier it is to miss it. Also, ensure that you have applied enough ultrasound transmission gel, and that any air pockets in the gel have been dispersed as this can cause excessive static.

HOW DO I CALCULATE THE BEATS PER MINUTE (BPM)?

Simply count the heartbeats for 10 seconds and multiply by 6.

WHAT IS A NORMAL RANGE FOR A FETAL HEARTBEAT?

A normal range is usually anywhere from 120-180 beats per minute. Usually, it is very easy to recognize the difference between your own heartbeat and the heartbeat of a fetus is so much faster. Fetal heartbeats commonly sound like a galloping horse.

I FOUND THE THE HEARTBEAT IN TWO DIFFERENT LOCATIONS, DOES THIS MEAN I AM CARRYING TWINS?

No, it is common to pick the heartbeat up from two different locations. Generally, physicians note the difference in the two heartbeats if twins are suspected.

IS THE DOPPLER SAFE TO USE? HOW OFTEN?

To date, through extensive research no harmful effects have been found. Concerning frequency of use, however, we ask that you consult with your physician and follow their recommendations. Doctors opinions vary widely (eg. "once a day" to "as often as you like"), so it is important that you and your doctor agree so as not to cause any unnecessary concern about the frequency of exposure.

THE LED INDICATOR (LIGHT) ON THE DOPPLER IS BLINKING, WHAT DOES IT MEAN?

When the battery is running low, the light will begin by flashing slowly. At this point you can still use the doppler for some time. As the battery becomes too low, the light begins blinking more rapidly and will eventually shut the doppler off. The doppler unit requires regular 9 volt batteries that can easily be replaced by removing the small panel in the back of the doppler.

DO I NEED A PRESCRIPTION TO RENT A DOPPLER?

No, that is necessary only in the US for US customers, who are governed by the American FDA regulations. Canada is regulated by Health Canada, who have no requirements such as this at the present time.

I HAVE RUN OUT OF ULTRASOUND GEL, WHERE CAN I PURCHASE MORE, AND IS THERE ANYTHING ELSE I CAN USE?

You can order more from us ($7.00 for a 4 oz bottle, or $10.00 for a 250 ml bottle, excluding shipping and GST). However, in many cases you can purchase more from your local medical supply stores (check your Yellow Pages), or in some cases local pharmacies carry it as well. Some women have also used aloe vera gel, vitamin E oil, mineral oil, or other body lotions, but some increase in static may be heard.

CAN I RECORD MY BABY’S HEARTBEAT?

Yes, by connecting the doppler to your computer or another recording device (using a 1/8" Stereo to 1/8" Stereo Cord). Connect one end to the headphone output on the doppler and the other end to the line in on your computer. If you are using your computer, then just record the heartbeat by using an audio recording program like Windows Sound Recorder.