Congratulations! You are pregnant. These words can bring excitement and tension at the same time. Pregnancy is not a walk in the park and your priority is to ensure you are in good health all through the pregnancy. Dr. Margie Corney and her team at Women First GYN offer quality prenatal care to expectant mothers in Chesapeake, VA, and the surrounding area. Let’s look at the most common tests that you will find along the way:
1. Pap Smear and STD Testing
During your first prenatal care visit, around week 8-10, your doctor will screen you for STDs and cervical cancer. The presence of these conditions can put your pregnancy at risk. Your doctor will also establish your blood group.
2. Genetic Testing
During your first visit to your doctor, she will discuss the available genetic tests that can show if your baby is predisposed to certain disorders. These disorders include fibroids, cysts, and disorders of the chromosomes such as Downs syndrome.
3. Additional Blood Work
Your initial blood tests will indicate your immunity to rubella, a dangerous virus to the fetus. Other blood tests including thyroid function, liver tests. kidney tests and blood pressure may be ordered subject to your medical history.
4. Glucola Test
At week 28, your doctor will require you to take the Glucola test. This test helps establish your tolerance levels to glucose to determine the presence of gestational diabetes (a high level of glucose in the blood due to the hormonal activity of the placenta). Your doctor will request for the test earlier if you are overweight or when other risk factors for developing gestational diabetes are discovered.
There is more to ultrasounds than cute pictures of your unborn baby or gender reveals. Ultrasounds give a closer look at your baby in different stages of your pregnancy.
Your doctor will conduct the first ultrasound during your first prenatal visit to establish when your pregnancy is due. Based on your need for genetic testing, a second ultrasound test can be conducted during week 12 or 13. At week 20, your doctor will do a detailed anatomy ultrasound to establish the weight and size of your unborn baby and any abnormalities. If you wish to know your baby’s gender, this is the time to ask your doctor. If your doctor establishes that there are no complications with your pregnancy, this will be the last ultrasound.
Your doctor will order an ultrasound at week 24 to help give an accurate observation of your baby’s growth. At week 36, your doctor will conduct an ultrasound to establish the baby’s position in readiness for delivery.
This list is not exhaustive and your doctor can order for other tests when needed to help you have a happier and healthier pregnancy.
If you missed your periods, it is high time to visit your doctor for a pregnancy test. If you return with positive results, this will mark the start of many other tests to ensure your baby’s safety. Visit your doctor to learn more about the importance of tests during pregnancy.
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