Wednesday, March 16, 2011
Posted by: Gina Allison, MD
Pregnancy is a remarkable and transformative period in a woman’s life. In my opinion, each and every pregnancy is simply amazing! The privilege of providing pregnant women with medical care, as well as the necessary emotional support, is, in part, why I chose to specialize in obstetrics and gynecology.
Many women and couples choose to revel in the knowledge of a new pregnancy privately for a period of time. Whom to tell and when is entirely up to you. Regardless of whether you decide to share your special news or wait, you’ll want accurate prenatal information right away.
There is no shortage of information about pregnancy out there: on the internet, in bookstores and, after you make your news public, from family and friends. Sorting through the sometimes conflicting information and advice of the well-intentioned can be overwhelming.
The reality is that access to reliable, high-quality information is more important early in your pregnancy than at any other time. Even before you know you’re pregnant, the baby’s heart, nervous system and other organs are beginning to form. Certain health problems, such as diabetes, exposure to chemicals and medications can cause harm to the developing pregnancy. In addition, there are scientific studies showing the importance of proper nutrition and appropriate weight gain for the health of both you and your baby.
At Women’s Healthcare Associates, we welcome you into our office soon after you find out you’re pregnant. At your first appointment, you’ll receive important information about diet and nutrition, lifestyle and prenatal care in a warm, friendly, educational setting. You’ll also get information about important decisions you’ll need to make early in your pregnancy, such as whether to undergo genetic screening. We’ll collect blood and urine samples for standard, early pregnancy lab tests so your provider has the results before your first visit. We’ll also calculate your Body Mass Index (BMI) to identify your personal target weight gain for the pregnancy. We encourage your questions, which will be answered by our knowledgeable registered nurses. All of this is done weeks before the traditional “first OB appointment” would have been scheduled, providing the information you need to be confident about your pregnancy.
So if you’re pregnant, call us. We want to help you get the healthiest start possible. Contact an office >
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Dr. Gina Allison is a board-certified OB/GYN physician and surgeon who sees patients at the Tualatin Office of Women’s Healthcare Associates, LLC.