What are the essential pregnancy tests each month?

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After a specialist’s pregnancy diagnosis, some pregnancy tests are necessary to ensure the developing fetus’s health.

Regular genetic tests every three months

  • What are prenatal tests?
  • What are the usual prenatal tests during pregnancy?
  • Types of prenatal tests?
  • First-trimester pregnancy tests
  • Second pregnancy tests
  • Third-trimester pregnancy tests
  • What are optional tests during pregnancy?
  • What are prenatal tests for women over 35?
  • Understand prenatal tests and their results!
  • Can a blood test be avoided during pregnancy?

From now on or after the due date, you will have a series of tests to monitor your pregnancy. While some tests are prenatal examinations, others are voluntary and are recommended in exceptional cases by a genetic counselor or counselor. Most of these tests are quick, painless, and suitable for both mother and baby’s health.

What is the use of prenatal pregnancy tests?

Prenatal testing is a series of medical tests that you do during pregnancy. These include blood tests, invasive genetic testing, ultrasound, vaginal testing, and fetal health monitoring to help your doctor determine the health of you and your baby.

Some tests are standard and are usually done in any pregnancy to analyze the baby’s progress and see if you can keep the baby healthy until delivery.

Some other tests are optional and will be done when you are exposed to some side effects. These optional tests can help diagnose any genetic problems or congenital disabilities in the fetus.

If you have a specific family history, you should talk to a genetic counselor because a specialist can help you identify congenital disabilities or possible conditions that could affect you and your baby’s health.

What are regular tests during pregnancy?

The following are prenatal tests that you should do regularly during pregnancy:

Blood pressure test

This is done to check if you have preeclampsia, high blood pressure, and symptoms of damage to an organ that mostly affects the liver or kidneys.

Urinalysis

This is done to check for all urinary tract and bladder infections and conditions such as preeclampsia. High protein levels in the urine are a sign of preeclampsia.

blood test

Rh factor and anemia are tested for blood type. They also diagnose infections such as hepatitis B, HIV, and syphilis and determine the weight during a prenatal examination to determine if weight gain is ideal.

What are the specific types of prenatal tests?

Prenatal tests are classified into diagnostic and screening tests.

Screening tests

These tests show if the child has chromosomal abnormalities. In this test, parameters are set for the results. If the results are higher or lower than the measurement level, the results are evaluated positively and need further testing. You should know that performing these tests is not dangerous.

Diagnostic tests

These tests give definitive results about whether your child has a genetic problem or a congenital disability. The results are 99% accurate and usually follow screening tests. Diagnostic tests may pose risks to you and your baby.

First-trimester pregnancy tests

The list of your first trimester tests, from week 0 to week 13, is as follows. Blood test – Primary blood test for the following:

Test: Blood type

To identify the following: Rh factor. HCG levels. Sexually transmitted infections (hepatitis B, HIV, and syphilis). Immunity against diseases such as measles and chickenpox. Vitamin D deficiency Blood sugar levels are genetic risks for sickle cell anemia, muscle anemia (SMA), cystic fibrosis, thalassemia, thalassemia, and other possible diseases.

How to do it:

The blood sample is taken using a needle and syringe and sent to a laboratory for testing.

Risk of doing this test:

There is no danger except bruising of the hands.

Test: Urine test

To identify these: High blood sugar levels that indicate gestational diabetes. High levels of the protein indicate preeclampsia and the amount of red or white blood cells and bacteria that indicate a urinary tract infection (UTI).

How to do it:

You deliver your urine sample to the lab, and the technician uses a dropper to place one or more drops on the test strip.

Risk of doing this test:

There is no danger

Test: Paired villi sampling (CVS)

This test is done to diagnose congenital disabilities, such as the following between the tenth and thirteenth day:

Genetic disorders such as cystic fibrosis

Chromosomal abnormalities, such as Down syndrome

This test is usually recommended for people who are prone to genetic diseases.

How to do it:

A small sample of placental cells is taken for testing.

Risk of doing this test:

Completely safe and reliable

Test: Prenatal Test (NIPT)

To check for chromosomal abnormalities, including Down syndrome, is done after the ninth week of pregnancy. Edwards Syndrome, Patau Syndrome also determines a child’s blood type and gender.

How to do it:

Blood samples are used to check for abnormal signs of cell-free DNA.

Risk of doing this test:

There are very few risks.

Test: Ultrasound

The first ultrasound is done between weeks 6 and 9 to check for the following:

  • Fetal heart rate detection
  • Ectopic or tubal pregnancies
  • Number of embryos

How to do it:

This is done using a transducer or device on the abdomen that emits sound waves and creates an image on the screen.

Risk of doing this test:

Its risks are very low.

Test: nasal transparency screening

This test is done to determine the risk of Down syndrome between the 11th and 13th week of pregnancy.

How to do it:

This method uses a unique ultrasound to check the fetal neck’s thickness to calculate chromosomal error probability.

Risk of doing this test:

There is no danger

Second-trimester pregnancy tests:

These prenatal tests are usually done in the second trimester of pregnancy (i.e., months 4, 5, and 6):

Test: Amniocentesis

This test is done between 15 and 20 weeks of pregnancy (sometimes much earlier). It is followed by Chromosomal problems such as Down syndrome, sickle cell anemia, and neural tube defects such as spina bifida are diagnosed.

How to do it:

A thin needle is inserted into the amniotic sac to collect fluid containing embryonic cells.

Risk of doing this test:

Significantly few risks are involved.

Test: Fetal blood sampling/blood sample/cord blood sampling

This test is done early in the seventeenth week and is for the following:

  • Anemia and oxygen levels
  • Maternal Rh antibodies

How to do it:

A fetal blood sample is taken from the umbilical cord or fetus.

Risk of doing this test:

Risks and fatal infections may occur.

Test: quadruple screening

This test is done between 15 and 18 weeks to check for chromosomal abnormalities and neural tube defects.

This test measures four substances that are transferred from the fetus to the mother’s bloodstream:

Alpha-photoprotein. hCG, sterol, inhibin-A

How to do it:

Uses blood samples for testing

Risk of doing this test:

It is completely safe.

Test: Level 2 ultrasound

This test is done every time between the 18th and 20th week to see if the fetus is ready.

How to do it:

It uses a transducer that sends sound waves to the body to see ultrasound images.

Risk of doing this test:

There is no danger

Test: 3D and 4D ultrasound

They are usually performed when the pregnancy seems complicated. Examine fetal abnormalities such as neural tube defects and cleft lip or palate or exceptional cases.

How to do it:

In this test, several two-dimensional images are taken at different angles using an ultrasound device.

Test: Glucose control

This is done between 62 and 82 weeks of pregnancy to determine the risk of developing diabetes.

How to do it:

With a blood sugar test, you are asked to have a sweet drink.

Risk of doing this test:

There is no danger

Test: Glucose tolerance test

This test is done between 26 and 28 weeks of pregnancy to diagnose gestational diabetes. It would help if you had a strict diet for a few days. Then, move fast for 14 hours before the test.

How to do it:

Blood tests can help identify the condition by drinking sugary drinks and secret blood tests. While you have a good understanding of your baby’s condition at this time, your doctor will do a few more tests to make sure your baby is healthy and in better shape.

Tests related to the third trimester of pregnancy:

These prenatal tests are recommended in the third trimester of pregnancy (7th, 8th, and 9th months):

Group B tape test

This is usually done between 35 and 37 weeks of pregnancy to diagnose group B streptococcus. Cotton ears are inserted into the vagina and others into the rectum and then sent to a lab to be tested for bacterial pressure on cells. There is no risk in performing this test.

Nasal transparency test

This test is done every time after the 28th week of high-risk pregnancy or if you have forgotten your birth date. This test monitors the child’s health and can show that the child is anxious. A flexible belt is placed around the abdomen to follow the movement of the fetus.

Biophysical test

This test is done after 32 weeks of pregnancy and should include tests such as a stress-free test. Determines whether it is time to give birth or not.

An ultrasound transducer with an elastic band with two sensors around the abdomen is used to detect fetal heart rate, body movement, respiration, amniotic fluid volume, and muscle tone. There is no risk in performing this test.

What are optional tests during pregnancy?

Optional tests are performed on pregnant women at risk of having children with a congenital problem or disability.

First, these tests are performed:

  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Pair sampling
  • Nasal transparency screening

The second:

  • Multi-marker screening
  • Amniocentesis

Third:

  • Nasal transparency test
  • Biophysics

What are prenatal tests recommended for women over 35?

Genetic testing is usually recommended for pregnant women over 35 years of age. This is because the risks of chromosomal abnormalities increase with age. Standard tests recommended by a gynecologist include the following:

  • Amniocentesis
  • Nasal transparency screening
  • Pair villi samples
  • Anatomy ultrasound

If these tests’ results are abnormal, your doctor will refer you to a genetic counselor who can help you see options and manage the disease.

Why do prenatal tests?

If your doctor recommends prenatal tests, you should ask the following questions and more.

  • Why do I need these tests?
  • What will the results say?
  • Are these tests mandatory to take the test?
  • How accurate are these tests?
  • How long does it take for the tests to be done?
  • What are their risks?
  • How much do they cost?
  • Do they have insurance coverage?
  • Where should I take the tests?

Answering these questions will help you become familiar with the experiment and overcome any fears or worries.

Can you avoid a blood test during pregnancy?

You can not decide if you need a blood test or not. Your specialist is the only one who can make the right decision. Remember that these tests are done to ensure the safety of you and your baby.

The exact number of tests performed on each pregnant woman varies depending on their health status.

Also Read:

Dangerous consequences of anemia in pregnancy

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