Your first prenatal care visit is one of the most in-depth visits you’ll experience throughout your pregnancy. It’s best to inform your healthcare practitioner and schedule an appointment as soon as you test positive. Your first visit normally occurs at 6-8 weeks. Here’s how to prepare, and what you can expect.
Your healthcare provider will discuss a variety of concerns at your first visit. Be sure to have information regarding your personal, mental, gynecological and obstetrical history. Your doctor also will inquire about your medication and supplements. You and your partner’s family history also will be questioned. Your doctor will discuss your diet, physical activity and prenatal supplements.
Even though you tested positive with your home pregnancy test, your healthcare practitioner will want to confirm pregnancy via a blood test. This is more accurate, as it confirms your hCG levels, which will be elevated during pregnancy. Your doctor will also be able to calculate gestational age via an ultrasound, and provide an estimated due date.
Your heart, lungs, breasts, blood pressure, and abdomen may be checked. Your doctor may also conduct a pelvic examination to ascertain the size of your uterus and pelvis form. He or she may make a note of any varicose veins, weight and height.
Screening for blood glucose levels usually takes place if you’ve had pregnancy-related diabetes before. Your practitioner may also conduct STD screening for HIV, gonorrhea, and hepatitis B.
He or she may conduct a PAP smear, as well as a urine test to decipher your white blood cell count, and protein measures. Be prepared for a barrage of blood work. This may include testing for antibody levels, anemia, as well as your resistance to chicken pox and rubella. Your Rh status, and blood type may also be confirmed.
You may have been genetically predisposed to conditions such as thalassemia or cystic fibrosis prior to conception. Your healthcare provider will conduct genetic carrier testing for this at your first prenatal care visit.
Book an appointment with us if you’ve tested positive for pregnancy, or suspect you are pregnant. Our compassionate obstetricians will ensure that you and your baby get the most out of your first prenatal visit.