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Magowan BA, Owen P, Thomson A. Antenatal and postnatal care. In: Magowan BA, Owen P, Thomson A, eds. Clinical Obstetrics and Gynaecology. 4th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2019:chap 22.
Reviewed by: John D. Obstetrics and Gynecology Department, Loma Linda University School of Medicine, Loma Linda, California, Dr. Jacobson Also reviewed by David C. Brenda Conaway, the editorial director, Dugdale, MD, the medical D. A. M. Editorial team.
Your doctor may use an ultrasound during one examination to gauge the size of the baby’s neck at the back. This is called nuchal translucency.
As early as 10 weeks into a pregnancy, a different test known as chorionic villus sampling (CVS) can identify Down syndrome and other genetic disorders.
To determine your due date, you should have an ultrasound performed in the first trimester. The first trimester ultrasound will usually be a vaginal ultrasound.
How to prepare for your first prenatal visit:
We’ll inquire about your medical history, that of your partner, and your family history. This is to ensure that both you and your unborn child have the best prenatal care plan possible. Bringing a list of your current medications is also a good idea. Include any vitamins and OTC medications that you are taking.
It’s hard to remember everything. Consequently, it’s a good idea to put your questions in writing and bring them to your first appointment. Check out our suggested list of questions here.
There are many good options for over-the-counter prenatal vitamins. Choose one with at least 400mcg of folic acid and make sure it contains DHA, a supplement that can aid in promoting the growth of the brain and the eyes. Fish high in DHA and low in mercury is a healthy addition to your diet for both you and your unborn child.
Keep yourself hydrated, well-nourished and well-rested.