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Robyn’s Nest endorses good prenatal care. In the United States, good prenatal care involves routine testing. The following tests are performed in the physician’s office or outpatient setting:

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Pregnancy Test: A urine or blood pregnancy test is performed
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Blood Pressure and Urine Testing: Blood pressure is taken each time you go to the Obsterician or Midwife. High blood pressure could indicate signs of pre-clampsia or general nervousness and must be monitored. Urine tests are done each visit as well. Urine testing could reveal signs of infection, high blood sugar or pre-clampsia.
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Blood Tests: Blood tests are performed on the first obstetrical appointment to determine iron count, immunization to rubella (german measles), HIV or AIDS antibodies, and Rh factor. Most woman are Rh+, however, some may be Rh-, which may require a special diet.

The following tests are performed, with your permission, and are considered special testing:

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Maternal Serum Alpha-Fetoprotein Screening Test (MSAFP): This is a simple blood test that identifies pregnancies at higher-than-average risk of certain serious birth defects, such as Spina Bifida and Down Syndrome. It is important for pregnant women to understand that it is a screening test and, in most cases, an abnormal test result does not indicate a problem with the baby. This test is often done between weeks 14 and 22 of gestation. The purpose is to measure the amount of alpha-fetoprotein (AFP), a substance produced by the liver of the fetus, in a mother's blood stream, providing valuable information about a developing fetus. This test cannot diagnose a birth defect - it can only indicate an increased risk. An abnormal test result simply means more testing is needed.
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Amniocentesis: This test is usually performed at 16 or 17 weeks gestation. It tests for Down Syndrome and other genetic defects. Using a local anesthesia and ultrasound, a needle is inserted into the abdominal wall to take a sample of amniotic fluid. The fluid is tested. There are some risks to having this test done. Discuss the risks and the medical necessity of amniocentesis with your doctor.
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CVS: Chorionic Villus Sampling (CVS) is an alternative to Amniocentesis. This test can be done as early as 6 weeks. It tests for Down Syndrome and other chromosome abnormalities. A needle is inserted vaginally to collect a sample of chorionic villi and is guided by means of ultrasound.
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Ultrasound Scan: This is a non-invasive test that is relatively safe during pregnancy. The ultrasound is a high frequency sound wave. The sound bounces off the organs and in this case, the baby, to produce a picture on a monitor or screen. The doctors use this tool to check all the baby’s organs, limbs and the sex of the baby.
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Glucose Testing: Sometime around the 5th month, the doctor’s office will schedule a glucose tolerance test. You will be asked to drink a soda like drink and wait a period of time before blood is drawn. This test is to detect gestational diabetes. Some woman experience gestational diabetes (high blood sugar during pregnancy) and require a special diet to control it where others may require insulin. This type of diabetes usually disappears shortly after birth. Should glucose testing result in a high glucose count, your doctor may schedule a 6 hour glucose tolerance test in an outpatient setting. See Diabetes in Pregnancy

 

 


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Medical Testing During Pregnancy


 


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