Auscultation is listening to the internal sounds of the body, usually using a Stethoscope.
In Obstetrics by the 20th week one can hear the fetal heart sound with the help of Fetoscope. It is heard like a ticking of watch under a pillow. As the position of the fetus changes the location of FHS (Fetal Heart Sound) also changes. Normally the FHS is 120-160 beats/min. The fetal heart sound are best audible through the back (Left Scapular Region) in Vertex and in Breech presentation (the Convex Portion of back is in contact with the Uterine Wall) where as in face presentation the FHR is heard through the fetal chest. As a rule the maximum intensity of FHS is below the umbilicus (in Vertex) and around the umbilicus in Breech presentation. There are two other sounds which can be confused with heart sound.
Soft, blowing, systolic murmur which heard at the sides of the uterus. It is similar with the maternal pulse and is due to increase blood flow through the dilated uterine vessels.
Funis or Fetal Souffle
Slow, blowing murmur similar with the fetal heart sound. It is due to rush of blood through the umbilical arteries.
Stethoscope and Fetoscope.
- Apply firm pressure to mother’s abdomen to feel part of baby’s body.
- Apply the stethoscope on mother abdomen which side back is feel.
- Note the regularity and rhythm and count the heart rate.
- If finding abnormality notify the doctor.