Pregnancy, Fertility and Childbirth

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    To use a kick count chart during pregnancy, simply check the box that corresponds with the number of minutes it took to feel 10 movements. After a few weeks you will probably see a pattern in the results. Call your provider immediately if you notice a significant change in your baby’s movement patterns.

    A Count the Kicks Chart is an easy-to-use tool to get to know your baby and one way to alert you to potential problems.  
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    A , Internal Medicine, answered
    More and more women are deciding to have underwater deliveries. The tub needs to be big enough to hold two or three people with 2 or 3 feet of water. When the baby comes out, the midwife or doctor cuts the cord while the baby is still underwater—and then the baby gasps for his first breath when he's removed from the tub. Though it's not all that common, the moms who go the aqua route say they love it. Humans, indeed, may have come from the water to the land and then returned to the water, only to come back - perhaps why we can be born underwater (other mammals can't do this - apart from whales and manatees, of course). Just plan for it ahead of time. More and more hospitals and birthing centers have tubs, but if yours doesn't or you're planning to deliver at home, you can rent one.
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    In general, you should quench your thirst and settle your stomach with anything you crave because you need fluids and nutrients during pregnancy. Bear in mind, though, that you should eat a balanced diet. Eating spinach at 2 a.m. is OK, but eating hot chili regularly or a half-dozen candy bars is not. If you have a desire to eat strange foods or non-food items such as clay or laundry detergent, speak with your doctor. This could indicate a nutritional deficiency that needs to be corrected.
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    A , OBGYN (Obstetrics & Gynecology), answered
    An ectopic pregnancy is diagnosed by an abnormal rise in the pregnancy hormones along with vaginal bleeding and an ultrasound that shows the absence of an intrauterine pregnancy and/or a pregnancy seen in the fallopian tubes.  The diagnosis of an ectopic pregnancy is very difficult.  Due to the fact that this can be a life-threatening situation, it is very important that a patient stay in close contact with her doctor during the evaluation of an early pregnancy, especially if their doctor is worried that she could have an ectopic pregnancy.
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    A , Administration, answered

    If you are considering giving birth in a particular hospital, look at its website and/or go on a tour to find answers to these questions:

    • What kind of anesthesiology and pediatric coverage does the hospital offer?
    • Does it have a blood bank available?
    • What is its registered-nurse-to-patient ratio? What is it in active labor?
    • What percentage of births at the hospital are cesarean deliveries?
    • What percentage of women who are admitted for VBAC deliver vaginally?
    • What are the routine policies for laboring women?
    • How does the hospital deal with requests for non-routine practices?
    • What percentage of women has an epidural for labor?
    • Are showers, tubs, or whirlpool baths available for laboring women?
    • Can I labor, give birth, and recover in the same room?
    • Are there restrictions on the number of people allowed in the labor and delivery room at once?
    • Under what circumstances would I be separated from my companions?
    • What is the rooming-in policy for babies, and under what circumstances would my baby be separated from me?
    • What are the routine newborn care policies?
    • Does the hospital mandate certain shots for all newborns?
    • What if I do not want my child to have those shots?
    • What assistance is available for breast- feeding mothers?
    • Is this hospital certified as "Baby- Friendly"?
    • Are private or semiprivate rooms available?
    • Is there an additional charge for those rooms?
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    A answered
    A molar pregnancy is when tissue in the uterus (womb) forms into an abnormal growth or tumor instead of the placenta. In a healthy pregnancy, the placenta grows in your uterus and supplies your baby with food and oxygen through the umbilical cord. A molar pregnancy always ends in pregnancy loss. Without treatment, it can be life-threatening to a pregnant woman.

    Signs and symptoms of a molar pregnancy include:
    • Bleeding from the vagina in the first 3 months of pregnancy
    • Grape-like cysts (fluid-filled sacs) passing out of the vagina
    • Intense nausea and throwing up
    • Pelvic pressure or pain. These happens rarely.
    If you have any of these signs or symptoms, call your healthcare provider right away. Learn more at: marchofdimes.org
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    A , OBGYN (Obstetrics & Gynecology), answered

    The most common symptoms of an ectopic pregnancy are pelvic pain and vaginal bleeding with a positive pregnancy test.  If a patient experiences these symptoms, she needs to seek help through an emergency room physician or an OB/GYN immediately because an ectopic pregnancy has the potential of the pregnancy rupturing in the tube and can cause internal bleeding and possibly death.

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    A , Administration, answered

    Potential birthing locations include:

    Giving birth at home: Giving birth at home is a proven safe choice unless specific risk factors are present before labor or develop during labor. In familiar surroundings, labor usually unfolds harmoniously over a period of hours or sometimes days.

    Freestanding Birth Centers: Freestanding birth centers are homelike centers with access to specialist consultation and hospital acute care services as needed. The birth center philosophy is simple�pregnancy and birth are normal until proved otherwise. Birth centers are guided by the wellness model of pregnancy and birth.

    Transferring to a hospital: Although figures vary, approximately 8 to 13 percent of women who labor at home or in a freestanding birth center will need to transfer to a hospital for assistance during labor. However, complications that require rapid emergency transfer are very rare. Midwives and other practitioners who attend women at home or at freestanding birth centers arrange for medical consultation and for hospital transport when necessary.

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    A , Administration, answered

    While those of us in their late thirties, forties, and early fifties have far fewer pregnancies than younger women, a disproportionately high percentage of pregnancies are unexpected. Slightly over half of all women aged 40 or more who get pregnant were not intending to conceive.

    If you did not expect or desire to become pregnant, consider all of your options, which include having an abortion or placing the baby for adoption, as well as bearing and raising a child. Knowing that this may be your last possible pregnancy may make this a particularly difficult decision, so get as much nonjudgmental support as you can.

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    Our Bodies, Ourselves: Menopause
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    A , Administration, answered

    A partner who is loving and nurturing can offer wonderful support as you face an unexpected pregnancy. But even if you don't have such a person in your life, you deserve and need to be respected during all aspects of pregnancy and decision making.