You’d think that at-home fetal heart monitors would keep your not-yet-born baby safe, right? Not so much: Experts warn that these popular pregnancy products might be putting your baby at risk. In explaining why the heart rate monitors should be banned, it’s less about any innate danger in the making of the devices and more about the manner that they’re used; More often than not, they’re not placed in the hands of professionals, so fetal dopplers can be dangerous when used by those without the proper working knowledge.
It isn’t a new discovery that at-home heart monitors are risky, and yet they’re still being put on the market. Walmart doppler models run as low as $17, promising a “portable, non-invasive, and user-friendly device allows you to hear your baby’s heartbeat.” Medical-grade fetal dopplers hovering around $200 can be bought online, though a major brand notes that the devices are just “intended for use by health care professionals in hospital, clinic, and private office settings.” Seeing as they’re honestly everywhere these days, what could be so harmful about them?
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