Pregnancy Essentials Part 3: The first trimester – first trimester essentials

First Trimester Essentials

So! You took a pregnancy test at home and then went to your OBGYN to confirm your pregnancy on ultrasound .

You saw your little nugget to be!

You are excited about this pregnancy!

But, now what? What are the next steps during this adventure?

I created this timeline of events for the first and second trimester of pregnancy. Hopefully, it will give you a brief, but an informative look of events during the first half of your pregnancy. You can download this timeline as a PDF. Click the link below.

Weeks 6 – 10 – You’re pregnant, but now what?

Do you remember why coming prepared to your doctor is important?

Here’s why! At your first official pregnancy visit, you cover a lot of ground:

  • A complete review of your medical history.
  • A Physical Exam, including a Breast and Vaginal Exam
  • Blood work to determine :
    • Vaccine immunity (varicella, MMR)
    • ABO blood type
    • Hepatitis B immunity
    • Urine cultures
    • Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) – Gonorrhea, Chlamydia, HIV, Syphilis
    • Anemia
  • Genetic Screening for Aneuploidy
    • These are screening tests, which are designed to determine the RISK for a condition being present in the fetus, such as Trisomy 21 (Down Syndrome)
    • Some couples may choose to do genetic testing before pregnancy. Here’s a brief look into genetic screening in pregnancy

Having a pre-pregnancy genetic test can provide a lot of information to both patients and doctors. This is especially important in patients with a personal or family history of Thalassemia, Sickle Cell, Down Syndrome, exposure to certain medications or drugs, history of infertility, etc. If you or your partner are positive for being a carrier or having a condition, you should be referred to a genetic counselor to guide you with the next steps

  • A possible Ultrasound to determine the dating of the pregnancy

Fetus measuring 9-10 weeks Gestational age.

Some women will have Nausea and Vomiting of pregnancy

  • 50-80% of women in pregnancy report nausea, with less than half having vomiting
  • Here are a few tips to manage these symptoms

Non-medical Treatments

  • Avoid foods that trigger these symptoms
  • Have small, frequent meals: bland foods and high protein content help!
  • Try ginger gum, candies or tea
  • Vitamin B6

Still, got symptoms?

  • Diclegis or the combination of Vitamin B6 and Doxylamine have been found to significantly reduce the symptoms of nausea and vomiting
  • Medications like Zofran and replan can be prescribed. As a note, there are some studies that early use of Zofran can have an increased risk of birth defects. Please ask your doctor for further details.

Weeks 11 – 14

From here, each of your visits your doctor and your team will:

  • Take your blood pressure
  • Measure your weight
  • Collect Urine
  • An official ultrasound is done to look at the fetal neck – this is nuchal translucency and its part of the genetic screening test

You’ve made it through the first trimester. Click below for a downloadable PDF for these highlights. Personally made for you! As always, leave your comments and concerns below. Always consult your own doctor with more questions!

Up next: The Second Trimester!

Click here for the 1st trimester PDF!

Glossary of Terms

Varicella – A highly contagious viral infection causing an itchy, blister-like rash on the skin. Commonly known as chicken pox

Measles Virus – a highly contagious viral infection that causes measles. This is passed through air droplets. Easily preventable with vaccination

Blood type – classification of blood and antibodies, designated as A, B, or O

Anemia – A condition in which the blood doesn’t have enough healthy red blood cells.

Aneuploidy – presence of an abnormal number of chromosomes in a cell

Nuchal Translucency – An ultrasound evaluation for the collection of fluid under the skin behind the fetal neck in the first-trimester of pregnancy.

Get In Touch

Daniel Niku, MD, MS

Call Us: (310) 652-9347

Visit Us: 150 North Robertson Boulevard Suite 200
Beverly Hills, CA 90211

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