Test for Physical Health in Pregnancy

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PostSweethoney on 2nd November 2012, 3:03 pm

A pregnant woman needs to remain healthy throughout the period of her pregnancy in order to have a healthy baby. This can be achieved by visiting a specialist in Obstetric and Gyneacology or a certified Nurse Midwife for antenatal care. The woman is booked for an appointment every 4weeks until the 28th week of pregnancy, every 2weeks until 36weeks and once a week until delivery. On each appointment, the Doctor/ Nurse carries out the following test on the woman:
Pregnancy test: this is carried out to ensure that the woman is pregnant
Weight and height: this is checked to rule out complications.
• Blood pressure is checked because pregnant women are at high risk of hypertension
• The heart, lungs and breasts are checked to rule out any abnormality.
Pelvic Examination: In this, pap smear is done to screen for cervical cancer and cultures done to rule sexually transmitted diseases (such as gonorrhea and Chlamydia)
• A bimanual internal exam (two fingers inside the vagina and one on the abdomen) will be performed to determine the size of the uterus and pelvis and to check for any abnormality of the uterus, ovaries and fallopian tubes.
• An Ultrasound machine is used to listen to the foetus heart beat with the aid of an instrument called Doppler.
Laboratory investigations include: A full blood count (FBC to screen for blood diseases such as anaemia), Rubella (to test for immunity against German measles), Hepatitis B antigen (HbsAg) to test for presence of hepatitis B virus), urinalysis to test for kidney disease and bladder infections, blood type and rhesus factor to avoid the complication of erythroblastosis fetalis.
• In addition, in the course of the test, the medical practitioner will be able to know the woman’s date of delivery so as to prepare for the forth coming baby.

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