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Pregnancy - Topic Overview

What kinds of exams and tests will you have? continued...

In some medical centers, you can have screening in your first trimester to see if your baby has a chance of having Down syndrome or another genetic problem. The test usually includes a blood test and an ultrasound.

During your second trimester, you can have a blood test (triple or quadruple screen test) to see if you have a higher-than-normal chance of having a baby with birth defects. Based on the results of the tests, you may be referred to a geneticist for further discussion. Or you may have other tests to find out for sure if your baby has a birth defect.

Late in your second trimester, your blood sugar will be checked for diabetes during pregnancy (gestational diabetes). Near the end of your pregnancy, you will have tests to look for infections that could harm your newborn.

What changes can you expect in your body and your emotions?

You will go through some amazing changes during pregnancy. Your body, emotions, and relationships will all do some growing. These changes are common, but some may be a challenge.

Every woman feels these changes in her own way. Even the way she changes can change. In the beginning of your pregnancy, you may feel so tired that you can barely keep your head up. But at other times, you may have trouble sleeping.

Many women feel nauseated in the morning (morning sickness) or at other times of day in the early part of pregnancy. But some women never have this problem. Your breasts will get larger and may feel tender. Throughout your pregnancy, you may get heartburn or crave certain foods, and you may have aches and pains. You also may enjoy the flutters of your baby moving and kicking.

Your emotions may move around too. Even women who are happy about their pregnancy may worry a lot about their babies. They may even feel some sadness at the coming changes in their lifestyles.

Your relationship with your partner and other children you may have also may change. Talk with your partner and with your doctor if you have concerns about how you're feeling.

Frequently Asked Questions

Learning about pregnancy:

Interactive tools:

Decisions:

  • Should I have the maternal serum triple test (triple screen)?
  • Should I have an early fetal ultrasound?
  • Should I have an amniocentesis?
  • Should I have chorionic villus sampling?
  • Should I bank my baby's umbilical cord blood?
  • Should I take antidepressants during pregnancy?

Special concerns:

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WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: July 23, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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