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what tests need to be done during pregnancy?

  1. #1
    dingdongding is offline Registered User
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    what tests need to be done during pregnancy?

    If I want to use a private doctor, how many blood tests need to be done throughout a pregnancy? what are they for?
    Aside from blood tests and OSCAR, anything else that are routine and should be done?

    any reply would be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
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    carang is offline Registered User
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    really depends on your health and how your pregnancy goes. i know that with the public system, they test everyone for glucose tolerance. i had numerous blood tests and ultra-sounds, but then again i was hospitalised 13 times over 2 pregnancies (public patient both times).

    i don't think that anyone could give you a definitive answer as each pregnancy and each woman is different.

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    lesliefu is offline Registered User
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    if you are over 35 then they would recommend a down syndrome test, like cara says, glucose is normally tested too in the private clinic because it is a quick and easy way to see if you have / prone to get gestational diabetes. i didn't have too many blood tests in either of my 2 pregnancies if I recall correctly - rather I had a lot of scans to make sure baby was growing "properly" -that was due to my anxiety rather than the doctors though...

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    thanka2 is offline Registered User
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    Generally, these are the tests/procedures done when you're pregnant. Although all are available you are not required to do any of them--actually, you don't even have to attend prenatal appointments if you don't want to but for your health and the baby's of course it's recommended.

    1. Confirmation of pregnancy--either by urine test, blood test or scan with the doctor
    2. The OSCAR test which I believe has to be performed before 12 weeks but I am not totally clear on that--it's considered safe and and the earliest detection test they can use to check for abnormalities--we have chosen to not do this test in both of our pregnancies. If you choose to have this test and there are some abnormalities showing then you may be offered other tests including amniocentisis.
    3. Structural Scan (around 20 weeks of pregnancy)--this is where the doctor checks to see that the baby's major organs are developing normally and also to take a look at the spine and limbs--this is a special scan and costs extra usually at the doctor
    4. Blood glucose tolerance test--you are told to fast overnight and then come in in the morning and have blood drawn and then drink a really sweet, syrupy drink and then wait two hours, return and have another blood draw. This helps test your risk for gestational diabetes
    5. At each monthly checkup, starting at about 4 or 5 months pregnant, the doctor should ask you to give a urine sample that they test to make sure your protein levels in your urine are at a good level--this helps doctors identify things like if you're having a problem with preeclampsia
    6. I think most doctors also do a strep test to see if you're a carrier for a certain strain of strep that present in the vagina. A significant percentage of women are carriers and if you are you'll need to take some extra precautions when giving birth because it can adversely affect your baby.
    7. Iron tests--in Hong Kong they're big on testing your blood for iron levels because of the blood disorder, thalassemia which affects a significant number of Hong Kong people. Usually this test is performed pretty earlier on in the pregnancy and should just be a normal part of any bloodwork series.
    8. The other standard part of checking up on your baby is listening to the fetal heartbeat

    Otherwise, unless you're having difficulties or at risk for something particular, there aren't many other tests or procedures you must do while pregnant, if I remember correctly

  5. #5
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    in the public system, they require a urine test at every check up. it checks for protien (pre-eclampsia) and sugar(gestational diabetes).

  6. #6
    newbiekt is offline Registered User
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    The glucose tolerance test is not standard if you are seeing a private ob/gyn unless you have risk factors/symptoms they won't do it. They also check your blood type at the beginning on the pregnancy to check if you have a negative (called Rhesus Negative) blood group. I have this and it means you need an injection during the pregnancy to ensure no complications if your husband has a positive blood group and therefore the baby could have a different blood type to the mummy. The other thing I found is that from about 30 weeks the doctor always checked the position of the baby by feeling my tummy to check whether it had turned around.

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    dingdongding is offline Registered User
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    thanks all for your replies. these are very helpful.

  8. #8
    thanka2 is offline Registered User
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    Hmmm....I think that the glucose tolerance test is standard worldwide. All the doctors in the States require it no matter if you're showing signs or not because gestational diabetes is not always obvious and if detected early (through testing) can be managed well and won't create as many problems for mother or baby. In Hong Kong I went with a private doctor and was also asked to do a glucose tolerance test which I had conducted on my own at a private testing center. I don't know why the private doctors in HK would choose not to do the glucose tolerance test. Hmmm.

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