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Your antenatal care
Contents:


  1. Pregnancy screening
  2. First contact with midwife or doctor
  3. Ultrasound scans in pregnancy - NHS
  4. The booking appointment

You'll also be offered diagnostic tests if any conditions are suspected. Some pregnancy screening tests should take place as early as possible in pregnancy, ideally by 10 weeks, but can be done later on if necessary. Towards the end of your pregnancy your midwife will talk to you about newborn screening. NHS Health Scotland has produced a leaflet explaining pregnancy screening in Scotland, why it's offered and what happens next if the test finds that your baby might have a condition or disorder.

Scans and tests leaflet. Home Healthy living Screening Pregnancy Pregnancy screening. Your pregnancy, your choice It's important that you understand the purpose and possible results of the screening tests before you decide whether or not to have them. You can discuss all screening tests with your midwife. What tests will I be offered during my pregnancy?

During your pregnancy you'll be offered: When will I have these tests? What tests will I be offered after birth? You'll have a number of antenatal appointments during your pregnancy, and you'll see a midwife or sometimes an obstetrician doctor specialising in pregnancy.

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Pregnancy screening

This page lists the appointments you'll be offered, and when you should have them. If you're pregnant with your first baby, you'll have more appointments than women who already have children. They should give you information about:. Some tests, such as screening for sickle cell and thalassaemia, should be done before you're 10 weeks pregnant. This appointment is an opportunity to tell your midwife or doctor if you're in a vulnerable situation or if you need extra support.

This could be because of domestic abuse or violence, sexual abuse, or female genital mutilation FGM. It's important you tell your midwife or doctor if this has happened to you. This is the ultrasound scan to estimate when your baby is due, check the physical development of your baby, and screen for possible abnormalities including Down's syndrome. You will be offered an ultrasound scan to check the physical development of your baby.

This is also known as the anomaly scan. The main purpose of this scan is to check that there are no physical abnormalities. Screening for HIV, syphilis and hepatitis B will be offered again by a specialist midwife to women who opted not to have it earlier in pregnancy. These tests are recommended as they greatly reduce the risk of passing infection from mother to baby. Your midwife or doctor should give you information about preparing for labour and birth, including how to recognise active labour, ways of coping with pain in labour, and your birth plan.

First contact with midwife or doctor

This discussion may take place at the 34 week appointment, or at another time during your pregnancy. Your midwife or doctor will discuss the options and choices about what happens if your pregnancy lasts longer than 41 weeks. Your midwife or doctor should give you more information about what happens if your pregnancy lasts longer than 41 weeks.

If you have not had your baby by 42 weeks and have chosen not to have an induction, you should be offered increased monitoring of the baby. Find out more about rights to time off for antenatal appointments at the GOV. UK page on working when pregnant: During pregnancy, babies often twist and turn.

That doesn't always happen, though. If your baby is lying feet first with their bottom downwards, they are in the breech position. Your obstetrician and midwife will discuss with you the best and safest form of care. You will be advised to have your baby in hospital. You'll usually be offered the option of an external cephalic version ECV. It's a safe procedure although it can be a little uncomfortable. If an ECV doesn't work, you'll need to discuss options with your midwife and obstetrician. Although breech babies can be born vaginally, you will probably be offered a caesarean section.

If the baby is close to being born, it may be safer for you to have a vaginal breech birth. Depending on how many weeks you are when a transverse position is diagnosed, you may be admitted to hospital. This is because of the very small risk of the umbilical cord prolapsing if your waters break.

Screening tests for you and your baby

This is a medical emergency where the umbilical cord comes out of the womb before the baby and the baby must be delivered very quickly. Sometimes, it's possible to manually turn the baby to a head down position and you may be offered this. It's almost impossible for a transverse baby to be born naturally. So, if your baby is still in the transverse position when you approach your due date or by the time labour begins, you'll be advised to have a caesarean section.

Ultrasound scans in pregnancy - NHS

Home Healthy living Pregnancy and baby Pregnancy Tests, scans and checks. Tests, scans and checks See all parts of this guide Hide guide parts Your antenatal care Who's who in the antenatal team Your antenatal appointments Baby positions in the womb. Your antenatal care When you first learn that you're pregnant, get in touch with a midwife or GP as soon as possible.

You can read all the information on this page, or click on the links below to go straight to the relevant section: Starting antenatal care You can book an appointment with your GP or directly with your midwife as soon as you know that you're pregnant. At this first visit, you will be given information about: You should be offered screening for sickle cell disease and thalassaemia before 10 weeks.

This is so you and your partner can find out about all your options and make an informed decision if your baby is at risk of inheriting one of these conditions. It's important to tell your midwife or doctor if: You should also tell the midwife if you know the baby's biological father is a genetic carrier for one of these conditions you have had fertility treatment and either a donor egg or donor sperm An important part of antenatal care is getting information that will help you to make informed choices about your pregnancy.

Your pregnancy, your choice

They can provide you with information in an appropriate format if you: You will be given information about: Questions you might be asked The midwife or doctor might ask about: Later visits are usually quite short. Your midwife or doctor will: You should be given information about: Planning ahead can make your visits easier, so here are some suggestions: Write a list of any questions you want to ask and take it with you.

Make sure you get answers to your questions or the opportunity to discuss any worries.

The booking appointment

If your partner is free, they may be able to go with you. This can make them feel more involved in the pregnancy. In some clinics you can buy refreshments. If not, take a snack with you if you're likely to get hungry. Who's who in the antenatal team While you're pregnant, you will normally see a small number of healthcare professionals regularly, led by your midwife or doctor.

Obstetrician An obstetrician is a doctor who specialises in the care of women during pregnancy, labour and after birth. Dietitian If you have any concerns about special diets or eating healthily, a dietitian can give you the advice you need, for example if you develop gestational diabetes.


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Your antenatal appointments You'll have a number of antenatal appointments during your pregnancy, and you'll see a midwife or sometimes an obstetrician doctor specialising in pregnancy. Pregnant employees have the right to paid time off for antenatal care. First contact with midwife or doctor Eight to 12 weeks: They should give you information about: Screening for sickle cell disease and thalassaemia should be offered before 10 weeks.

Eight to 14 weeks: Your midwife or doctor should: Time off for antenatal appointments Find out more about rights to time off for antenatal appointments at the GOV.


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  • Your pregnancy and baby guide.

Baby positions in the womb During pregnancy, babies often twist and turn. Turning a breech baby You'll usually be offered the option of an external cephalic version ECV. Giving birth to a breech baby If an ECV doesn't work, you'll need to discuss options with your midwife and obstetrician. How can we improve this page? Help us improve NHS inform. Message Maximum of characters.