Q: What hospital do you deliver at?
A: Chesapeake Regional Medical Center
Q: How often will I come for prenatal visits?
A: I general you will be seen monthly until 28-30 weeks, then every 2-3 weeks until 34-36 weeks and then weekly until delivery.
Q: What should I expect to happen at my appointments?
A: At every visit we will check your blood pressure, weight, urine for protein and glucose as well as listen to your baby’s heartbeat. We will ask you questions about how you have been feeling and answer any questions you may have.
Q: How often will I get an ultrasound?
A: Ultrasounds are done on an as needed basis. We do provide you with ultrasound pictures. Early ultrasounds are done to confirm the due date and that the pregnancy is developing as expected. A morphology/20 week ultrasound is routinely performed to observe the baby’s development. At the 20 week ultrasound the baby’s body parts including, heart, brain, spine, kidneys, bladder and limbs are evaluated for normal development. Often, it is at this ultrasound that the baby’s sex can be determined. Later in pregnancy, ultrasounds can be done to evaluate the baby’s size, position, and the amount of amniotic fluid around the baby. These later term ultrasounds are done only as necessary.
Q: What will happen at my first visit?
A: At your first visit we will review your medical and obstetric history, do a physical exam including a pap smear if it is due, draw prenatal labs and sometimes do an early ultrasound to confirm your due date.
Q: What labs are routinely done at the first prenatal visit?
A: Complete Blood Count, Blood Type and Antibody Screen, Hepatitis B test, HIV test, Rubella titer, Syphilis test, Urine Culture. Pap smear and cultures for infections are also frequently done at this appointment.
Q: What other lab tests can I expect?
A: We offer everyone a quad screen at around 16 weeks. This is a blood test that assess your risk of having a baby with certain birth defects including Neural Tube Defect/Spina Bifida, Down’s Syndrome, and Trisomy 18. This test does not tell us that your baby will have a problem. It only tells us that you are at increased risk. If the test results indicate that you are at increased risk of having a baby with one of these disorders we will offer you additional testing.
Cystic Fibrosis Testing is available to all patients. Please note that not all insurance companies cover this test. We encourage you to verify coverage before you have this lab drawn.
Gestational Diabetes Screening/ 28 week Glucola: All patients should be screened for diabetes of pregnancy. This test is generally done around 26-28 weeks of pregnancy.
Group Beta Strep/GBS culture: A culture for GBS will be done at around 35 weeks of pregnancy.
Q: When will I feel my baby moving and how much movement is normal?
A: Most women will feel their baby move by around 20 weeks, give or take a few weeks. All babies have their own pattern of movement. Some babies are very active and some are less active. It is important that you know what in normal for your baby. If you have a significant or sudden change in your baby’s movement please call the office.
Q: Should I get a flu shot?
A: We recommend that all pregnant women be vaccinated against seasonal flu. The CDC and The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologist recommend all pregnant women be vaccinated against flu regardless of gestational age. You should receive the flu vaccine in inactive/shot form. Do not use the nasal spray form of the vaccine.
Q: I am 35 and pregnant. I have heard this makes me high risk. Do I need to have any extra tests?
A: Any woman over 35 and pregnant is considered advanced maternal age. We know that as women age they are more likely to have a baby with certain genetic disorders. Therefore, we offer additional testing to all women over 35. You can choose to do all, some or none of the following tests.
Please note that these tests are not offered in our office, but during your genetic counseling appointment. If you are interested in these tests please let us know so we can set up an appointment for you to have these tests performed.
Q: How much weight should I gain during my pregnancy?
A: Weight gain depends on your starting size. If you are under weight (BMI <19.8) you should gain between 28-40 pounds. If you are normal weight (BMI 19.8-26) you should gain 25-35 pounds. If you are overweight (BMI 26-29) you should gain 15-25 pounds. If you are obese with a BMI >29 you should gain about 15 pounds. There are many sites on the internet that will calculate your BMI for you.
Q: I travel for work. Is it OK for me to fly?
A: In general, if you are having an uncomplicated pregnancy it is fine to fly until 34-36 weeks of pregnancy. Long flights do increase your risk of developing blood clots and swelling in your legs so it is important to stay well hydrated, stretch your legs often and wear support stockings. Please understand that if you choose to travel and develop complications while out of town you may need to seek medical care and stay at your destination until those complications resolve or you deliver.
Q: Can I ride a roller coaster?
A: You should NOT ride a roller coaster during pregnancy because it could damage your placenta and potentially harm you and your baby.
Q: I want to take prepared childbirth classes. Where can I go?
A: The Lifestyle Center at Chesapeake Regional Medical Center offers many classes including prepared childbirth class, baby care class, and breastfeeding classes. For more information go to: http://www.chesapeakeregional.com/resources/classes/prepared-childbirth or Call 757-312-6508 to register.
Q: Do you offer 3D/4D ultrasounds?
A: We do offer 3D/4D ultrasounds in our office. These are in addition to your routine medically necessary ultrasounds and are not covered by your insurance. For scheduling and pricing please ask at the front desk.
Q: How do I contact my Doctor if the office is closed?
A: If the office is closed and you are having a problem that cannot wait until the office reopens you can call 757-547-2322 for the Chesapeake Office or 252-449-2100 for the Outer Banks Office. The answering service will take a message and page the on-call provider/nurse. That person will call you back. If you do not receive a return call in 10-15 minutes please call again. Please be aware we cannot call in prescriptions when the office is closed. Please call for medication refills during regular office hours.
Q: I think I am in labor. What should I do?
A: Call 757-547-2322 for the Chesapeake Office or 252-449-2100 for the Outer Banks Office to receive guidance. If you cannot call you should go to the hospital. In the event of an emergency call 911.
Q: What foods should I avoid eating while I am pregnant?
A: For a complete overview of food safety in pregnancy got to: http://www.fda.gov/Food/ResourcesForYou/HealthEducators/ucm081819.htm