First Antenatal Visit

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During your first visit, I normally take your history and do a careful examination. Sometimes we will perform an ultrasound in the examination room and this may involve a vaginal ultrasound. This gives us a really good look at the uterus and ovaries and we may see the early pregnancy and fetal heart.

Before we do any examining, I will explain every step of what I’m about to do – and the interview and examination are done in a very relaxed atmosphere. We will discuss doing tests to check that the pregnancy is normal. This includes Non Invasive Prenatal Testing, (NIPT) which is a blood test, eg.  Panorama. The Nuchal Translucency screening involves a special ultrasound done at 11-13 weeks and another blood test. The scan at 18 – 20 weeks is good for identifying structural normality in the fetus.
It’s important that you feel comfortable and I encourage you to ask me any questions you may have or voice any concerns, no question is silly and I’m here to help.

Regular antenatal visits are an important part of your pregnancy, as this is the best way we have of checking on your health and the health of your baby. Mothers shouldn’t be worrying about their health or their baby’s health, that’s my job. We like to keep an eye on blood pressure and we will inform you of any results from tests that we do throughout your pregnancy. This includes the ultrasounds that we arrange and tests such as diabetes screening.

I find it important that we can reassure fathers/partners about any concerns they may have too, both about the early and later parts of the pregnancy and the labour itself.

Often discussing the parent-to-be’s concerns will help them to reassure their partner/wife that all is well. I encourage future mums and dads to attend the antenatal classes provided by the hospital. However, it is important that you speak to me about any concerns you may have on a day to day basis. Often providing emotional support and physical support through massage are things that partners can do to help the mother-to-be have an easier time with her pregnancy. This also helps form a stronger bond between parents as they approach the end of the pregnancy and the appearance of a new member in the family.

Pregnancy is a very rewarding experience – you’re bringing a new life into the world! It is important to take care of yourself and to enjoy your pregnancy. This is a huge milestone and your children will be with you for the rest of your life. I’m here to help to make sure that this wonderful experience goes as smoothly as possible so that you can embrace your pregnancy and the thrill of a new baby.

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