How long can a woman wait for first doctor appointment once pregnant?

Patient

Q: I am 9 weeks pregnant. Due to insurance issues, the clinic will not see me before June 1. I will be 15 weeks along by the time of the appointment. My last doctor (before moving) recommended being seen for the initial pregnancy appointment between 10 to 12 weeks. My question is, is it fine to wait until 15 weeks to be seen for the first time or do I need to find another clinic that will see me before that?

Doctor

A:   It is recommended that the initial visit be made within 12 weeks, for an assessment of your health and the health and development of your baby. Also, certain blood and screening tests, estimation of your due date, doppler examination of your baby’s heart sounds and determination of any risk factors that may be present, are all done during this first visit. Yet another reason for the visit by 12 weeks, is that the dating ultrasound, which is carried out at, or shortly after the initial visit, is more accurate if you are between 8 and 12 weeks pregnant. Thus it is important to make the first visit by atleast 12 weeks of pregnancy, for early diagnosis of the risk factors, their management and monitor the development of your baby.


 

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