Pregnancy Essentials Part 4 – The Second Trimester – pregnancy essentials

Pregnancy Essentials

Moms and dads to be, how are you all doing? Going to your doctor visits?
Give yourselves a pat on the back! You made it through 14 weeks of pregnancy. We enter the second trimester with some exciting events ahead!

This is known as the Golden Period, where most symptoms of early pregnancy disappear.

Before we continue, I want to give you an idea of how big your baby is by using a classic comparison for size: fruits and vegetables. With each week, you will see a comparison image to help put things into context. I have also provided some great links to get some more in depth descriptions of the events in pregnancy at this time. The following image was taken from Hello, Wonderful and it is a beautifully drawn representation of the size of the fetus as it develops. Below you will find clips of this image to guide you along.

Lets start were we last left off:

Weeks 15 – 23: The Start of the 2nd trimester
Dr. Niku, How Big is the Baby now?

At this stage in the pregnancy, the fetus is developing familiar and identifiable anatomy parts. This leads to our first highlight!

Highlight: Fetal Anatomy Scan between 18-22 weeks pregnant (a.k.a. Level II Ultrasound)

This is a detailed ultrasound of your baby. Key parts include:

Estimated weight for the baby

The baby’s anatomy

The placenta and umbilical cord

Your Cervix and uterus

It should identify any abnormalities in anatomy. If there are any, the doctors and ultrasound techs reviewing the ultrasound will give recommendations for what to do next

At offers some fantastic information that is easily accessible and to read for parents-to-be on this scan.

Other Highlights at this time include:

Visits are now every 3-4 weeks

Some women stop experiencing nausea and vomiting

Others have occasional sharp groin pain which is usually part the normal growth of the pregnancy

The second step genetic tests are done

Weeks 24-28: Two Trimesters done, Last One to go
Dr. Niku, How Big is the Baby now?

Highlight: Glucose Challenge Test (GCT)

This test is done to determine if a mother-to-be is at risk for diabetes of pregnancy (gestational diabetes mellitus – GDM)

The test involves drinking a sweet liquid and then taking your blood 1 hour later. It tells us how well your body can process sugar.

(kind of looks like gatorade)

The magic number after the test is 140.

If your body cannot process this test, a second test is needed to confirm the diagnosis of GDM. This test, however, requires drinking more of that sweet liquid and then taking multiple blood tests over 3 hours. If this is test is abnormal, then you are considered to have diabetes of pregnancy. This topic will discussed in depth as well.

Other highlights:

Indigestion and heart burn are common at this phase of pregnancy

You should start feeling the baby move more!

Learn about kick counts. I usually tell my patients starting at 28 weeks to start becoming familiar with their baby’s movements and frequency of movements.

You are two-thirds of the way through. You are doing great!

As always, feel free to ask me any questions or comment below. Consult your own doctor as well. Remember this is a team effort, and we want mom and baby to be healthy and safe.

Get In Touch

Daniel Niku, MD, MS

Call Us: (310) 652-9347

Visit Us: 150 North Robertson Boulevard Suite 200
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