How to Choose Your OB

As a newly pregnant mom-to-be, you may feel both excited and a little overwhelmed thinking about the journey ahead of you. Choosing an obstetrician-gynecologist (OB) you are comfortable with can help you feel more confident and relaxed as you move through the different phases of your pregnancy and prepare to meet your new little one.

When you start your search, ask your doctor for recommendations. You can also ask friends or family if they know someone they might recommend. The questions below can help you choose the right OB for you.

  • Does this doctor have a good reputation?
  • What is this doctor's training and experience?
  • What is the OB's general approach to pregnancy care and delivery?
  • Will the OB support the type of delivery I want (elective induction, natural birth, water birth, no pain meds)?
  • Am I comfortable with the OB's views about when to induce labor or perform a C-section?
  • What percentage of the OB's patients have C-sections?
  • What percentage of the OB's patients have episiotomies and under what circumstances are they performed?
  • If I want to work with a doula, will the OB support that choice?
  • How does the OB manage pain during delivery?
  • Who covers for the OB when he or she is not available?
  • If another OB might handle the delivery, can I meet him or her beforehand?
  • Does the doctor listen to me and explain things clearly?
  • Is my spouse or partner comfortable with this doctor?
  • Is the office staff pleasant and helpful?
  • Is the office location convenient?
  • How are emergencies and after-hour calls handled?
  • What hospital is the OB affiliated with?
  • Does my insurance cover this doctor's services?
WebMD Medical Reference Reviewed by Nivin Todd, MD on January 13, 2019

Sources

SOURCES:

American Board of Medical Specialties: "About Physician Specialties. Obstetrics and Gynecology."

March of Dimes: "Choosing Your Prenatal Care Provider."

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality: "Thinking about Having Your Labor Induced? A Guide for Pregnant Women."

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality: "What You Need to Know About Episiotomies."

ACOG: "ACOG Recommends Restricted Use of Episiotomies."

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