The first prenatal visit to your Columbus ObGyn is one of the most important visits of your pregnancy, and it should be scheduled when you are around 10 weeks into your pregnancy. This is often the initial appointment with the patient at which time medical history and background is discussed to uncover any medical problems, or problems in the family that could make the pregnancy of higher risk.
The patient will also undergo a thorough physical exam to review any abnormal findings, and determine an estimated due date for the birth. An ultrasound is typically performed to assure that the pregnancy is normal. Your Columbus ObGyn will test for diseases such as high blood pressure or diabetes.
Labs will also be taken to test for a variety of sexually transmitted infections, anemia, bladder infection, other vaginal infections, blood type, and immunities to rubella and exposure to Hepatitis B or C. Counseling about nutrition, appropriate weight gain, worrisome signs and symptoms, and a number of other topics are provided by your Columbus ObGyn and continued throughout the remainder of the pregnancy.
At each follow up visit:
- Blood pressure and weight are obtained.
- A urine test is performed to check for glucose and protein.
- Checking for swelling in the hands and feet is done
- We listen for the heartbeat of the growing baby and measure the size of the uterus.
Nutrition and weight management are important aspects of prenatal care and will be discussed with your Columbus ObGyn. Many women are considered to be obese before they get pregnant, which increases the chance of complications during delivery and makes ultrasound evaluation of the baby more difficult.
Obese women do not need to gain additional weight during pregnancy, while women of normal weight need an extra 300 calories a day and should gain between 25 and 35 pounds during their pregnancy. Women who gain a large amount of weight during pregnancy are typically at risk for complications at the during labor and this weight can be very hard to lose after delivery, contributing to lifelong obesity for some patients.
Prenatal visits should begin early in pregnancy and continue on a regular basis until delivery. Many office visits with your Columbus ObGyn are brief if a patient is doing well, but each one is important in screening for disease and evaluating the health of the pregnancy.