Medical tests such as a pregnancy ultrasound can help your health care provider monitor your baby's development, while more specialized pregnancy tests such as chorionic villus sampling (CVS) can help detect conditions such as Down syndrome and cystic fibrosis.  

In our section devoted to pregnancy, learn more about these types of pregnancy tests as well as the importance of prenatal care.  Also get information about pregnancy discomforts and multiple pregnancies.

Determining Your Baby’s Health

A considerable number of pregnancies are unplanned. In fact, around 50% or 1 in 2 of women falls pregnant without having planned to have a baby.

In such cases, it is impossible for couples to have a full health evaluation before trying for a baby in order to assess their genetic health and determine whether the baby they conceive will inherit any family diseases.

However, for the couples who are planning and trying for a baby, there is what is known as preconception genetic testing- this is ideal if you want to try to ensure the baby conceived is free of certain chromosomal abnormalities and hereditary diseases.

Your doctor or prenatal care specialist will first and foremost assess you and your partner’s family medical history to see whether there are any illnesses which seem to run in the family. Further to this, they may suggest carrying out genetic health testing to see whether you and your partner carry the disease causing gene.

Following this, they will discuss the likelihood of the disease being passed on to the baby, any likely complications and so forth. Couples can then decide, based on the risk evaluation, whether to have a baby of their own and adopt.

Prenatal Testing

A range of screening tests including ultrasounds are used to indicate whether there is anything wrong with the baby and monitor the health of the baby closely as pregnancy advanced.

Unfortunately, when it comes to certain conditions such as Down syndrome, a screening test such as an ultrasound will not provide a confirmation. So, if any traits associated with Down syndrome are spotted during a routine ultrasound, the expectant mother may be advised to undergo an amnio.

Amniocentesis and other diagnostic tests such as CVS carry certain risks such as miscarriage or injury to the fetus’ limbs. Pregnant women may be given the option of non invasive prenatal testing which is carried out with 0 risk using just blood samples from the mother.

The fact that the test is done using blood samples collected from the mother means that, unlike amniocentesis or CVS, there is not puncturing of the amniotic sac or tissue biopsy. Non invasive prenatal testing is offered also for paternity and a number of companies, including Genetic Testing Laboratories. The test is done using a kit and blood collection tubes. The blood is collected by a medical blood draw and a medical professional will need to do this.

Prenatal Care, Stages of Pregnancy and Teen Pregnancy

Taking care of your health is essential to the well being of your growing baby. Prenatal care means finding the right care giver for you as well as attending regular prenatal medical checkups.

Here you'll also find information on finding a doula and midwife, as well as questions to be sure to ask your health care provider.

Welcome To Pregnancy. Are You Ready?

Learn about the stages of pregnancy and follow your baby's development with our very own pregnancy calendar. Discover how to calculate your baby's due date and find fun ideas on how to announce your pregnancy.  

Also get information about the what your baby may look like week to week during your pregnancy and find out more about the differences in your body and your pregnancy during the different trimesters of pregnancy.

Teen pregnancy brings with it its own unique set of challenges. Learn about pregnancy myths and facts as well as teen pregnancy statistics. Here you'll also find advice on how to tell your parents that you are pregnant and about your options after your pregnancy is over.

Pregnancy Discomfort And Multiple Pregnancy

Experiencing discomfort during pregnancy is something all moms-to-be go through.

Learn about how to alleviate common pregnancy symptoms such as morning sickness, cramps and swelling, as well as how to minimize the appearance of stretch marks and varicose veins.

Eating for more than two? Being pregnant with twins or multiples is an exciting time for moms-to-be that can also bring with it special concerns.

Learn about staying healthy during a multiple pregnancy as well as information on how to reduce the risk of complications.

If you're a mom-to-be, working during pregnancy can be a challenge. Find out about how to stay safe from workplace hazards for pregnant moms as well as how to talk to your boss about going on maternity leave.

Staying Healthy During Pregnancy

Don't forget the importance of a healthy diet and exercise to your growing baby. Discover easy tips on eating right and staying fit during your pregnancy so that both you and baby stay healthy!

One common concern moms-to-be have is about sex during pregnancy. Learn about when sex during pregnancy can be unsafe and about comfortable sex positions, as well as changes in your libido during pregnancy.



Discuss all your pregnancy questions with other women in the forum

Login to comment

Post a comment

my first pregnancy (lil girl) i had tons of neg pee tests and 2 neg blood test i didn't get positive till 3 months ! i had light periods through whole pregnancy
8 years ago
Hello I am 18 and have a god chil I have been watching since she was four days old. Me fiance is 23 and we are so ready for a baby. The problem is that I know I will be a good momma but I still have doubts about it. I'm just scared to be a momma. We are planning to get pregnant but is there anything you can say to fix my scaredness. I'm just worried I won't be as good a momma as I think I will. Please help. I don't want to have a baby until I feel more confident about being a good mom
8 years ago
I just had my Mirena out almost 3 weeks ago. And my hubba and I are wanting #3 really badly. I have shown early symptoms and I know it's way tooooo early for a test. Implantation spotting, very light cramps (not like my monster-ish menstrual cramps) and I'm soooo sleepy. I mean, I could not be more than a week and a half along, if that. I wish there was an immediate test, lol. What do you ladies think? Am I or am I not?
8 years ago
Tiffany ~ You said you went to the hospital and they told you i was pregnant? Did they take a blood and urine test? Cause you can't get anymore accurate than that.. Pregnancy tests have been known to read negative when you test in early pregnancy. Lushiuslou26 ~ How late are you? If your unsure still after taking tests id say go to the doctors, they're tests are 100% and it always puts your mind at ease to know :) Pinkice~ Your period came early? If you've had your period since last having sex then chances are your not pregnant, but if your still worried take a test anyways, there is no harm in it . It just seemed that all of your comments have been going unanswered.. so i thought i might help :) Im 33 weeks pregnant and am expecting my first baby.. it has been a shocking and scary ride so far.. and with the countdown getting smaller there is even more to worry about but im also told its normal.
8 years ago
New to site. pinkice the constant need to urinate is one sign of being pregnant you should take a test or see a doctor.
8 years ago