Before Getting Pregnant

Prior to getting pregnant it is important that women optimize their eating habits. Women should also take a minimum of 400 ug of folic acid to minimize the risk of neural tube defects. It is important that caffeine and alcohol consumption are reduced if they are in excess and avoid all types of cigarette smoke both first and second hand. Over-the-counter medication and herbal and dietary supplements that you are taking should be cleared by your doctor.

It is also important to optimize your health if any medical conditions are present such as asthma, diabetes, epilepsy, obesity or poor oral health. All of these conditions can have a negative affect on your pregnancy.

Screening Tests

The state of California requires that patients and partners are screened for several diseases. These are HIV 1/2, Hepatitis B and C, Syphilis and HTLV 1/2. These need to have been performed in the last 12 months. For a detailed list of the exact tests, you can download thisPre-Pregnancy Testing and Pathogen Screening form.

In addition, all patients considering getting pregnant should have general health screening including:

  • TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone)
  • Prolactin
  • Blood Type and Rh status (Patient’s should know their blood type before getting pregnant)
  • Cholesterol Screen (Fasting lipid panel)
  • Diabetic Screen (Hemoglobin A1c)

Immunizations

The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology recommend that women be up to date on their immunizations:

  • Hepatitis B
  • Pertussis/Tetanus
  • Rubella
  • Varicella
  • Influenza

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