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January 28, 2005



Hey! I'm 13w6d and just had a cerclage put in last Friday. They checked the baby's heartbeat with the hospital doppler about 10 times and each time it took them probably 30 minutes to find it. The baby moved from the right side to the middle to the left. Just keep trying! Its there, you just really have to work at finding it. I've got full faith that Sprite is just hiding from the doppler and giving you trouble already! He/She is laughing at you! Tuck and Roll, Sprite! :O)

Good Luck! Keep trying! You can do it!


Delurking here because I had the same problem with the doppler that you did. It took me a full 2 hours to find it the first time, after 3 or 4 times trying for it! The thing that helped me the most is to lie completely flat and start right below the belly button. It also helped to have my DH man the wand, so I would be able to be completely flat. Good luck and keep at'll find it. :)


I'm 15 weeks right now. The doctor couldn't hear it at 13 weeks in the office. I got my doppler right after that and I'm finally now, in the last week, consistently hearing it. But it still takes a few minutes to find it. I was regretting renting it at first, since it was stressing me out more than it was supposed to! Just be patient!


I too rented a doppler from StorkRadio. I had trouble the first few times I used it (around 9 or 10 weeks if I remember correctly). The first time I almost had a complete meltdown. Then when A came home, I had him try and he managed to find it. Since then, he's been the go-to guy when I have trouble. He even found it one time at the OB's office when the nurse couldn't.

Things that have helped me are laying completely flat, just my head on one relatively flat pillow and putting the doppler wand really low (even now at 17 weeks) on my belly. I'm talking right above the pubic hair line. Then we get it in a position where we think we can hear the beat ever so very faintly. From there, we just slightly tilt the wand in numerous directions until the heartbeat gets much louder. It's worked every time.

It could also be that your placenta is located on the front (anterior) of your uterus. This may cause you to possibly have trouble hearing the baby's heartbeat and feeling fetal movement early on (16 + weeks).

Hope you find the "sweet spot" soon--and I don't doubt you will!


In my second pregnancy, the doctor picked up a heartbeat at around 8 or 9 weeks. So I BOUGHT a doppler, paid extra to have it shipped overnight and then couldn't hear it 'til 12 weeks. GRRRR. I was worried and then decided that I shouldn't (ha!) and then my wise eFriend gave me the following suggestion. I picked up the heartbeat right away. On my birthday. It was awesome!

Anyway, sit on the edge of your bed and then lie back. That way your stomach will be about the flattest that it can go...THEN feel around for and listen for it.

Hope it works for you!


P.S. Use a TON of the gel/lotion. That helps greatly too.


I rented a doppler around 9 1/2 weeks, I think, but couldn't hear the heartbeat until I was almost 11. Even then, it took FOREVER (and I mean like 2 or 3 hours) to find it. I had the most luck putting the wand just above my pubic bone, and tilting it downward, while slowly moving up towards my belly button. (Did that makes sense?)

Even after I found it at 11 weeks, there were some days when I couldn't find it. I wasn't able to consistently find it until around 13-14 weeks.


Jen P

Could your placenta be frontal? Mine is and we always hear the swoosh-swoosh of the placenta but never have heard the heartbeat. We've seen the heartbeat show up on the doppler (148 -- 160) but we won't be able to hear the heartbeat until closer to 25 weeks, we're told. Maybe ask the OB?

Good luck and hope you hear it soon!!


Man, it drives me nuts how they say it can pick up a heartbeat at 8 weeks. Sure, in theory it can, but it usually doesn't. My super-experienced midwife had to hunt around for 10 minutes to find mine at 10 weeks.

Anyway, I have nothing useful to offer. Happy heartbeat hunting.


And to add to the mess, if you have a retroverted (tilted) uterus by chance, then you may not find it at 10w.


I didn't hear the heartbeat until 12 weeks - my doctor couldn't find it any earlier either. It would take a while to find until I was a few more weeks. I think the baby can be really tucked under the pelvic bone sometimes.

One thing that helped me stay sane when I had trouble finding the heart was looking up how big the baby was at that time. I would measure out an inch and a half (or whatever it was) and try to remind myself that that was something pretty tiny I was trying to find in my abdomen.


I also recommend laying flat. Sometimes it took awhile in the beginning (around where you are) to find it, which only made me crazy with worry. I always had to start below the belly button and then start moving in a grid pattern, changing not only the position of the doppler, but the angle of which I was aiming. Remember, you're trying to shine a small flashlight into a dark closet. There's only so many places to hide, but since you can't see how close you are or where you've checked already it can be tough in the beginning. As he/she gets bigger, his/her chest also gets bigger and easier to find.


Coming way late to the party, but if you have a deep pelvis you may not be able to hear it on the Doppler until closer to 14 weeks.


I went to the doctor at 12 weeks and the nurse couldnt find the heart beat with a doppler, so they sent me for an ultrasound and everything was fine the heartbeat was 171 per minute

worry wart

hey! i went to the doc at 11w4d and he couldnt pick up my bubs heartbeat. he tried for ages with two differnt dopplers. as having had two prevoius miscarriages, this had really concerned me and im just really hoping that everything is ok. its so hard not to worry. i go for an ultrasound in a couple of days, im hoping that i get to see my little ones heartbeat pumping strongly. good luck with finding your bubs heartbeats xoxo


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Hi there... could be you're trying it too soon AND your baby is hiding from the wand. With my baby girl- they had a heck of a time trying to find her heartbeat at 17 weeks because she kept running and hiding from it. Babies don't like the noise. When they finally DID find her heartbeat- she would kick it away... kind of funny. Now I feel her moving all the time, so I don't worry as much, but I know what you're going through! My hubby & I just ordered a Bebe prenatal sounds deluxe pkg. where you can hear the baby's heart, uterine sounds, record the baby's sounds, play her music, talk to her into a microphone, etc. I can't wait until it gets here so we can use it!

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