Local family opens 4D ultrasound studio in Copperas Cove
By BRITTANY FHOLER
Expectant mothers now have a closer option to obtain a 4D ultrasound in Copperas Cove, with Lil Blessings 4D Ultrasound Studio in Cove Terrace Shopping Center.
There are other 4D ultrasound locations in Central Texas, but nothing in town, until now.
Owner Melinda Cavazos came up with the idea of Lil Blessings after seeing how her son-in-law was left out of the experience of getting to view his unborn son via ultrasound at appointments earlier this year. Her daughter, Alicia Traeger, was pregnant with her son Colin this year and experienced her pregnancy during the pandemic.
Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the number of people allowed into doctor’s appointments was limited, so Traeger went to the majority of her appointments alone.
“My son-in-law wasn’t allowed obviously to go into her appointments to ultrasounds and regular OB appointments, so doing [Lil Blessings] I was able to let a lot of dads into the studio to see their kids probably for the first time, so that was the main motivation: giving my son-in-law the opportunity to see his child, not via FaceTime,” Cavazos said.
Cavazos said she had been thinking about opening an ultrasound studio since the beginning of the year but got everything moving during the summer. Cavazos is a Licensed Vocational Nurse, and Traeger is a paramedic.
Lil Blessings will officially open its doors on January 2, 2021.
The studio will offer various ultrasound packages, Sneak Peek DNA testing to determine gender using bloodwork and heartbeat animals featuring the baby’s heartbeat.
In November, Lil Blessings offered free ultrasounds to allow employees train with the machines and saw several happy fathers-to-be.
“There’s a lot of happy tears by both mommies and daddies to be,” Traeger said.
This cemented why Cavazos and Traeger wanted to open the studio.
“Just offering the new dads the opportunity to see their kids and giving them a better experience than what they may have had at previous locations,” Cavazos said.
Lil Blessings 4D/HD Ultrasound Studio is the only studio of its kind in Copperas Cove.
With 4D/HD ultrasounds, the same sound wave frequency as a typical 2D ultrasound is used, according to the Lil Blessings’ website. The studio strictly adheres to the FDA standards. The difference between the two is that typical 2D ultrasounds are still images while the 4D/HD ultrasounds add the dimension of motion, so it looks like a video.
The number one determination of image quality is fetal position, according to the Lil Blessings website. Some babies are positioned where their face is not visible, or their hands and feet are in front.
At Lil Blessings, the staff are willing to go the extra mile to get the desired images of the baby that they are satisfied with, not just those that the parents are satisfied or content with, Cavazos said.
“If that means they need to bounce on a ball or take a little jog around the studio while another client is being seen, and then we will bring them right back in, we’re going to do that. We are going to make sure our clients are satisfied, and we are satisfied with what we get also. Not having them come back and waste their time when we could try to do everything we can here,” said Cavazos.
In situations where they cannot get the images they would like, the client will be asked to come back for repeat images within two weeks at no charge, Cavazos said.
“It’s not the parents’ fault that the baby could be uncooperative or doing whatever they want to do, so that’s what makes us stand apart because we’re willing to take that next step,” Cavazos said.
Depending on the package that is selected, appointments last for 15 minutes, and Cavazos said she allocates an extra 10 to 15 minutes between appointments to accommodate “stubborn babies.”
Cavazos said opening a new business during the pandemic is kind of scary, but she was confident in the success of the business, especially considering most fathers are still not allowed into many prenatal appointments.
Some of the packages offered include a basic 2D ultrasound with the heartbeat, starting at $50; 4D/HD ultrasounds ranging from $99 to $149, and the SneakPeek DNA gender testing which is $129.
This is a noninvasive prenatal test in which a sample of blood is drawn and sent to the SneakPeek Labs via Priority Mail Express, with results for FastTrack customers expected by email the same day the sample is received. For standard customers, the results can be expected via email the day after the sample is received. Gender determination can be done as early as eight weeks’ gestation.
Starting January 4, on each Monday, Lil Blessings will offer DNA and Donuts, where customers can choose the SneakPeek package with donuts and a beverage after their blood is drawn.
Images and video from the 4D/HD ultrasounds (depending on package) are sent to clients through their account on BabyFlix, a mobile app and website.
With BabyFlix, moms can also livestream their ultrasound to family who aren’t able to be there in person.
All of the packages offered by Lil Blessings are considered elective and are not covered by insurance. Clients can pay via cash or card. Although the two owners are medical professionals, Lil Blessings does not offer diagnostic services in any form. Additionally, in order to be seen at Lil Blessings, clients must provide proof that they are being seen by their own provider for their pregnancy.
As part of the studio’s grand opening during the month of January, each 4D/HD package is 15 percent off.
Lil Blessings 4D/HD Ultrasound Studio is located in Cove Terrace Shopping Center at 102 Cove Terrace. For more information, visit their website at https://www.lilblessingshd.com or call 254-238-8332.