Obstetrics and Pregnancy
Call for appointment:301-618-2273 301-618-2273
Getting pregnant and bringing a baby into the world is one of the many joys of being a woman, and no matter how many children a woman has, each pregnancy is special and unique. The obstetricians at UM Capital understand all aspects of pregnancy, from the physical changes a woman's body will undergo to the complex emotions that many pregnant women experience. Our goal is always for every pregnant woman to be a healthy mom and deliver a healthy baby.
Our board-certified obstetricians (OBs) and certified nurse midwives (CNMs) are trained in all aspects of pregnancy and delivery. From prenatal care and testing to birthing classes and breastfeeding support, UM Capital is your full-service destination for delivering your baby, whether it is your first or fifth.
Thinking of Having a Baby?
If you are thinking of getting pregnant within the next few months, now is the time to start to plan. Preparing for pregnancy is one of the best ways to ensure a healthy baby and mom. Your first step is to find a qualified obstetrician or certified nurse midwife and schedule a preconception office visit. This first visit is designed to assess your overall health and provide you with tools and tips to ensure your body is at its best before you start trying to become pregnant. The healthier you are before you become pregnant, the healthier you and your baby will be.
Before you get pregnant, your obstetrician or midwife may recommend: A prenatal vitamin and nutrition regimen
- An exercise program to ensure your pelvic muscles can accommodate a baby
- Stress management tools
- Health screenings for breast and gynecologic cancers as well as any hereditary cancers to which you may be prone
If you are or have been trying to get pregnant but haven't been successful, our specialized doctors and nurses can provide referrals to appropriate specialists for fertility issues.
You're pregnant! Congratulations! Now is the time to see your obstetrician or midwife regularly to make sure your baby is growing properly and your pregnancy is progressing as it should. As your body changes with pregnancy, any number of conditions may arise that warrant closer monitoring by your obstetrician. Gestational diabetes is quite common, as are pregnancy-related high blood pressure (preeclampsia), depression, even iron deficiency. These are conditions that put both you and your baby at risk which is why it is important to follow your health throughout your pregnancy. Prenatal appointments may include bloodwork, sonograms or other diagnostic screenings to check your health and the health of your baby.
Gestational Timeline for Prenatal Care
A typical pregnancy takes 42 weeks from conception to delivery, and your appointments will be scheduled more frequently the closer you get to your due date. If you are at higher risk of complications you may be scheduled for more frequently. Prenatal care is generally covered by insurance.
This is typically when you should come in to confirm your pregnancy. During this initial visit, we will perform a pelvic exam, pap smear, routine laboratory blood tests, and test for any genital infections, including for sexually transmitted diseases. Don't worry – this is totally routine! We will also go over your prenatal visit schedule, recommended screenings, diet and nutrition. We will also let you know about our birthing classes.
This is typically when you get to hear your baby's heartbeat for the first time! We will do a general assessment of your health to assure the pregnancy is progressing normally, including checking uterine size, maternal weight, blood pressure, and urine tests. We may be able to determine a due date! We will review your previous lab results and talk about upcoming screening.
As in the previous appointment, we will perform a general assessment and, if it is your choice, begin the additional screenings for neural tube and genetic defects. These initial screenings generally require a blood draw that we perform in the office. The screenings performed will depend on your health insurance, medical history, characteristics of your pregnancy, and your personal preference. If you haven't already done so, we may encourage you to register for our birthing class.
It's time for your first ultrasound to assess how well your baby is doing, estimate the baby’s size, and confirm the gestational age/due date. Sometimes, this ultrasound can also determine the gender of the baby!
At this visit, after your general assessment, we will talk about gestational diabetes, your risk for it and how and when we screen for it.
This is an important visit. We generally draw blood to test for diabetes and, depending on yours and the father's blood type, administer RhoGAM if required. RhoGAM is a medication that is often given to women when their blood type is Rh-negative and the baby's father's blood type is Rh-positive. This blood type combination can cause the mother to develop antibodies that can result in the baby developing hemolytic disease. If managed properly with RhoGAM, there is very low risk of developing the disease.
This is also the visit when we talk with you about what to expect when you go into labor and what to do if you go into labor before the baby is full term. There is nothing to worry about; we just want you to know what to expect!
Weeks 30, 32, 34
These are routine visits where we will do a general assessment and a pelvic exam to check for any cervical dilation.
Hopefully by now you will have had a chance to take the birthing class so will be ready to talk about your desired birth plan, whether traditional, medically assisted or a more natural birth in our birthing center.
After a general assessment and pelvic exam, we will do a vaginal and/or rectal culture to check for Group-B Streptococcus (GBS). a type of bacteria that often lives in the vaginal area. If you test positive for GBS, we will give you antibiotics during labor to help protect your baby from getting infected.
Week 37, 38, 39, 40
Getting closer! At these visits, we will do a general and talk about the signs and symptoms of labor.
If baby has not been born yet, we may perform additional testing and discuss the possibility of inducing labor.
By now you should really be ready to welcome your new baby if he or she hasn't already made an appearance! If your baby hasn't arrived by now, it is time to talk to your doctor about inducing or delivery by cesarean section.
The vast majority of pregnancies are perfectly normal with no complications during the pregnancy itself or during delivery. If at any point during your prenatal visits, your doctor or midwife determines that you or your baby need extra care, we will consult with our maternal fetal medicine (MFM) specialists. Our MFM doctors work side-by-side with our obstetricians and nurse midwives to make sure you get the extra care you need during your pregnancy and through your delivery.