Does Planned Parenthood Do Ultrasounds?

Yes. And no. At the majority of its clinics, Planned Parenthood does ultrasounds for just one reason: abortion.

What Are Ultrasounds?

An ultrasound is “a medical test that uses high-frequency sound waves to capture live images from the inside of your body.” It’s a technology similar to radar or sonar. And though scientists studied these concepts beginning in the late 1700s, it was only in the 1950s that it became possible to first use ultrasounds to see a baby inside a woman’s body. Today, the technology is routinely used in OBGYN offices worldwide.

But ultrasound technology is not always used to show a happy mother her growing baby. Sometimes that technology is used to help kill a baby.

For example, Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast explains that it (like other PP facilities around the country) does a “pregnancy dating ultrasound,” so it can determine the age of the baby and the type of abortion to provide.

Planned Parenthood of Tennessee and North Mississippi, however, does offer ultrasounds but no other prenatal care. I called and spoke with a young man who did not seem very forthcoming or knowledgeable and could not provide me with any other information about what would happen during that appointment. When asked if anyone could help me find information, he said that no Planned Parenthood facilities have direct lines, as that is their “policy,” so there was no information available. He only asked that payment of $170 be made on the day of the appointment. I asked if I could get a picture of the baby, and he responded, “Unfortunately, I do not have that information.”

This treatment is vastly different from the treatment a mom would receive at a doctor’s office or at a pro-life pregnancy center where human life is looked at as a blessing.


Why Do Ultrasounds Matter?

Ultrasounds allow the mom to see her baby. She can see him suck his thumb, move around, and maybe even smile! Many women consider the ultrasound one of the most exciting parts of pregnancy. This is the woman’s first glimpse into life with her new baby.

There are three different kinds of ultrasounds that allow for different views of the baby. A 2-D ultrasound is the type that most women get. This offers a cross-sectional view of the baby. A 3-D ultrasound compiles 2-D images from various angles. It then pieces them together to form a three-dimensional image. The 4-D shows movement. Here a mother can see her baby move, open his eyes, and maybe even smile!

3d ultrasound on screen in a hospital

In essence, these ultrasound images allow a mom to see and immediately bond with her baby. She now has tangible proof her baby is alive.

It’s easy to understand why Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers would not regularly provide ultrasounds just so women could see their babies. Simply put, the mom might decide not to go through with the abortion. And PP would lose a lot of money if mothers began deciding that.

Despite what Planned Parenthood wants people to believe, abortion is a big money-making business for the organization. The numbers are staggering, and they’re only rising. According to its most recent annual report (for the 2022-2023 fiscal year), which was released in April 2024, the number of abortions hit a record high. PP killed 392,715 babies during that time period. The price of an abortion ranges from $580 (for the abortion pill) to $2000 (for an abortion between 14 and 21 weeks). Even if all those 392,715 abortions were pill only (which they were not), PP would have made over 227 million dollars in just one year on killing babies.

And Planned Parenthood revels in its ability to kill more babies. Its president, Alexis McGill Johnson, once stated, “It’s really not a big deal that Planned Parenthood does [abortions]. We are a proud abortion provider. We believe that abortion is health care, and we believe, fundamentally, that self-determination begins with being able to control your own body and freedom begins with being able to control your own body.”

So, if the mom sees her baby and decides she cannot go through with the abortion, Planned Parenthood loses out.

Our donors' gift of an ultrasound helped Maria choose life. Today, Fernanda is a happy, healthy 6-year-old!

Our donors’ gift of an ultrasound helped Maria choose life. Today, Fernanda is a happy, healthy 6-year-old!

Studies have shown that abortion-minded women who see ultrasounds are more likely to choose not to abort than women who do not see the ultrasound. These findings have led to numerous states enacting laws requiring the use of an ultrasound before an abortion. As of September 2023, twenty-seven states have such laws.

According to the Guttmacher Institute:

  • 6 states mandate that an abortion provider perform an ultrasound on each person seeking an abortion and require the provider to show and describe the image.
  • 10 states mandate that an abortion provider perform an ultrasound on each person seeking an abortion, and 8 of these require the provider to offer the patient the opportunity to view the image.
  • 8 states require that a patient be provided with the opportunity to view an ultrasound image if their provider performs the procedure as part of preparation for an abortion.
  • 6 states require that a woman be provided with the opportunity to view an ultrasound image.


Final Thoughts

Planned Parenthood is an abortion business. Doctors in Planned Parenthood and other abortion clinics use ultrasounds to determine the age and size of the baby or to guide them as they perform abortions. They rarely use them otherwise.

In 2017, Live Action released a video showing that undercover callers had phoned 68 Planned Parenthood clinics across the US asking whether they performed sonograms. Sixty-five of them either didn’t offer ultrasounds at all or only did them as part of the abortion process. Only three said they could do one to check the health of the baby. That same year, Sue Thayer, a former Planned Parenthood manager, spoke with Lila Rose of Live Action about the use of ultrasounds. She stated that they were only used for abortions. Furthermore, she stated that clinic workers purposely turned the monitor around so the patient could not see her baby.

Planned Parenthood execs don’t see the horror of abortion. They believe that pro-lifers enact these laws to hurt women. They don’t see the damage that abortion does to the babies and the moms.

The slaughter of babies is big business. And Planned Parenthood can’t do without it. That’s why the organization refused to stop doing them when President Trump, in 2017, said its funding could stay if it stopped performing abortions.

But now, with the Biden/Harris administration, we see the restoration of Title X money to Planned Parenthood. In the last fiscal year, our government gave nearly $700 million of our tax dollars to Planned Parenthood. This is money that would be better spent on supporting pregnancy resource centers and stabilizing families. Heartbeat International, Save the Storks, and hundreds of other pro-life pregnancy centers offer free or low-cost ultrasounds and other help for moms and babies in need. These organizations mostly run on donations, but imagine the good they could do for families if that $700 million went to them instead of to Planned Parenthood.

Thanks to our donors for sending diapers and baby supplies to struggling moms!

Thanks to our donors for sending diapers and baby supplies to struggling moms!

We know that the work of the pro-aborts won’t stop. Thus, our work cannot stop either. We must keep fighting for the babies at both the state and local levels because we know the truth. Abortion kills a baby every single time.

Susan Ciancio has a BA in psychology and a BA in sociology from the University of Notre Dame, with an MA in liberal studies from Indiana University. Since 2003, she has worked as a professional editor and writer, editing both fiction and nonfiction books, magazine articles, blogs, educational lessons, professional materials, and website content. Fourteen of those years have been in the pro-life sector. Currently Susan writes weekly for HLI, edits for American Life League, and is the editor of its Celebrate Life Magazine. She also serves as executive editor for the Culture of Life Studies Program, an educational nonprofit program for k-12 students.


  1. Heather on December 3, 2022 at 3:16 PM

    Planned Parenthood is not about abortion, according to commenters? How about hearing it from the horse’s mouth:

    Isn’t there a tad bit of emphasis on abortion, to put it mildly?

    Also, I’d recommend careful re-reading of this and other articles about PP on this site, and elsewhere too.

    • Anne B. on May 9, 2024 at 7:52 PM

      Since the video contains the statements of actual Planned Parenthood employees, dealing with prospective clients, I’d be inclined to believe those over PP’s carefully crafted public image.

      The fact is that PP is primarily an abortion provider. They’ve claimed that abortion is only 3% of their business, but that’s because they count every detail of their interaction with a client as a separate “service.” They even count individual contraceptive pills as “services.” As one writer pointed out, that’s like saying that because Yankee Stadium hosts a hundred or so games in a season, and sells a million hot dogs during that same season, that Yankee Stadium is primarily in the business of selling hot dogs.

      Have a look at their annual reports, and you’ll see that a very large percentage of their revenue comes from performing abortions.

  2. Kat Flynn on June 27, 2022 at 5:23 PM

    Shame on you for providing false information. PP provides many different health care services at low cost for women, including contraceptives, cancer screenings, STD testing/treatment, pregnancy testing, prenatal services and abortion services.

    Your misleading article is shameful.

  3. Caitlyn on October 4, 2021 at 10:56 PM

    huh, seems very one sided. and while everyone is entitled to their opinion, I’d have liked more info on the ultrasounds and costs or whatever and less of the pro-life propoganda. Because I myself am looking at going in for an ultrasound to make sure that the safe practices I took during intimacy with my fiance didn’t result in a child because many people in my life would frown on me having a child before marriage.

    • HLI Staff on October 5, 2021 at 1:59 PM

      Caitlyn, If you have specific questions about ultrasound please reach out to us at has a “Find a Center Near You” search. Many pregnancy care centers provide pregnancy tests and ultrasound free of charge.

  4. Kaitlyn on July 7, 2021 at 2:04 AM

    I just… one, this is blantantly untrue.
    Planned Parenthood provides many needed things for the process of actually HAVING the child. They provide prenatal care, testing, and ultrasounds to help see how old the fetus is.
    They do just fine without providing abortions, mind you, and they’re literally called Planned Parenthood…
    Please stop spreading false information. You can have your opinion on abortion, but do it without the lies.

    • Ann on August 16, 2021 at 2:26 PM

      Actually, these are not lies. Did you read this? Yes, some Planned Parenthoods do ultrasounds, but only to determine the age of the baby so they can kill them. They don’t do ultrasounds to give you a picture and send you happily on your way. And the majority of their money is gotten through abortions. They do a lot of STD testing. They give hormones to misguided people. They don’t do “just fine” without providing abortions. In fact, they want to do more abortions. Take a look at this interview from the former president. She says they wanted her to mention abortion every chance she got. This organization wants to kill babies. That’s where the money is.

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