The Importance of Prenatal Care
What is a Prenatal Visit?
A prenatal visit is a routine visit you make to your doctor while pregnant. You should expect to make several visits to your doctor throughout the course of your pregnancy.
When Should I Schedule My First Prenatal Visit?
Typically we see someone their first visit when they are 8-10 weeks. This is calculated by the first day of your last menstrual period. If necessary we can see patients prior to this dating depending on the circumstances. At that time we will discuss your medical history, family history and orient you to our practice.
How Often Will I Have Prenatal Visits?
8-28 weeks pregnant-You will be seen every four weeks.
28-35 weeks-every 2-3 weeks.
Important visits to remember:
Initial Visit: Review medical history, physical exam, pap smear. Orientation to our practice.
2nd visit: Prenatal Labs, carrier screening for mom including Cystic fibrosis screening. We offer both sequential screening & cell free fetal DNA testing depending on eligiblity & patient preference.
16 week visit: Discuss influenza vaccination with your provider. May require additional bloodwork.
20 week visit: Anatomy ultrasound
28 week visit: Gestational Diabetes blood test screening. If you are Rh negative you will receive a Rhogam injection. Visit rosebabies.com to pre-register for the hospital and classes. Receive TDAP vaccine.
35 week visit: Group B Strep vaginal culture.
What Happens at a Prenatal Visit?
While each visit may differ slightly, here is what you can expect at a prenatal visit: At the first visit, the doctor or nurse will likely take your medical history and your vital signs, including your height, weight and blood pressure. The doctor will listen to baby's heartbeat and feel and measure your abdomen. Occasionally, you will give a urine or blood sample and you'll probably have an ultrasound or two. Toward the end of your pregnancy, your doctor will also check to see how far dilated you are.
Your doctor should also talk to you about any questions or concerns you have and instruct you on how to best care for yourself and your growing baby. Don't be afraid to ask questions, especially if this is your first pregnancy or if something doesn't seem right.
Prenatal visits are routine, so don't be surprised if they are fairly short after the first one. The doctor simply wants to check to make sure everything is looking okay, and if it is, you should be good to go until your next appointment!
Interested in Prenatal Care from Partners in Women's Health?
Call our Denver, CO office at (303) 399-3315 to schedule your appointment!