Your First Early-Pregnancy Prenatal Visit: What to Expect

Either your period never came this month, or you had a lighter, shorter period than normal. And then a few weeks later, you start to feel nauseous, your breasts might burgeon, you act ultra-hormonal, and goodness knows, by 3:00 pm you’re so deeply tired you feel like someone whacked you in the head with a sleep club. If the home pregnancy double-line wasn’t enough to ensure you, then these first trimester symptoms will seal the deal: You. Are. Pregnant. Now what?

As soon as you test positive for pregnancy, we invite you in for an appointment. Even at an early stage, we can look at the developing baby (then an embryo) via ultrasound (a.k.a. sonogram) and see a heartbeat, and other signs of viability. Beyond that, we will test you for general health and run certain tests specific to pregnancy. In addition, we will consult with you about proper nutrition and keeping safe during pregnancy, and arrange a prenatal visit schedule with you.

Here’s what to expect from that first prenatal visit:

  • The Standard Test Trio. These three tests will usually be performed at all of your prenatal visits, as they are the basis for assessing warning signs. In addition, we measure the increase in abdominal size (fundal height) and listen to the fetal heartbeat.
    • Maternal weight
    • Blood pressure
    • Urine (“pee stick”) testing for sugar and protein.
  • A complete medical and obstetric history. This includes a series of questions. 
  • Blood Tests
    • CBC (Complete Blood Count)
    • Tests for Anemia (Hemoglobin, Hematocrit, Iron Stores)
    • Blood type and antibody screen
    • Rubella test (to check for immunity to German measles)
    • Hepatitis B carrier test
    • Syphilis test
    • HIV test
  • Urine Checks

    • Urinalysis
    • Urine culture for infection
    • Urine toxicology screen
  • Pelvic Exam  
    • Pap Smear (if not performed recently)
    • Cervical/vaginal cultures for gonorrhea and chlamydia
    • Checking for any causes for concern.
  • Any additional tests indicated from your history. If the above tests do not cover conditions specific to your medical history, we might order additional tests most suited to your baby.

As you can see, the first prenatal visit is comprehensive. We want to get you off to the right start, feeling confident with your test results, and catching anything which needs treatment or monitoring right from the beginning. So, if this is you, don’t hesitate, call us to now to make an appointment. Above all, we wish you a healthy pregnancy – we’re here for you.