Journal of the European Society for Gynaecological Endoscopy


A Short History of Sonography in Obstetrics and Gynaecology

S. Campbell

Create Health Clinic, London, United Kingdom.



sonography, ultrasound, Ian Donald, Real- time ultrasound ,3D ultrasound, Doppler, fetal biometry, fetal abnormalities, preterm birth, pre-eclampsia, fetal chromosome abnormalities ,fetal therapy, early pregnancy disorders, pelvic masses, ovarian cancer screening, IVF

Published online: Sep 26 2013


The history of sonography in Obstetrics and Gynaecology dates from the classic 1958 Lancet paper of Ian Donald and his team from Glasgow. Fifty years on it is impossible to conceive of practising Obstetrics and Gynaecology without one of the many forms of ultrasound available today. Technological developments such as solid state circuitry, real time imaging, colour and power Doppler, transvaginal sonography and 3/4D imaging have been seized by clinical researchers to enhance the investigation and management of patients in areas as diverse as assessment of fetal growth and wellbeing, screening for fetal anomalies, prediction of pre-eclampsia and preterm birth, detection of ectopic gestation, evaluation of pelvic masses, screening for ovarian cancer and fertility management. Ultrasound guided procedures are now essential components of fetal therapy and IVF treatment. This concise history is written by someone who has witnessed each of these advances throughout the ultrasound era and is able to give perspective to these momentous happenings.