Planning for Pregnancy
This is an exciting and important time! When pregnancy is planned, there is an opportunity to optimize your health prior to becoming pregnant. This can be beneficial to both you and your baby. For this reason, we ask that you call to schedule a “Preconception Appointment”. Please call us at (608)729-6300 to schedule. Ideally this appointment is several months before you are planning to start trying to become pregnant.
This appointment is an opportunity for you and your physician to discuss some of the following:
- Your current contraception and when to discontinue this.
- Your obstetric history including a history of miscarriage, termination, prior vaginal or cesarean deliveries. If you have had a cesarean section, we will help discuss the optimal plan for delivery of subsequent pregnancies. This conversation involves a close look at the reasons for your first cesarean, so having those records transferred to us prior to this appointment can be very helpful!
- Your general medical health – especially issues like diabetes, high blood pressure, depression, and optimizing your weight prior to conception.
- Your current medications. This entails a discussion of the risks and benefits of each medications as well as healthier alternatives during pregnancy if they are available.
- Lifestyle changes to benefit both conception and pregnancy. It is important not to expose a fetus to smoking, alcohols, and other drugs. Moderate regular exercise during pregnancy is safe and recommended for most people during pregnancy and it is best to start this prior to becoming pregnant.
- Prenatal vitamins and nutrition. It is important to insure that you are getting adequate amounts of some vitamins before becoming pregnant. We can prescribe a prenatal vitamin for you, or it is generally easier to purchase an “over-the-counter” prenatal vitamin to start immediately.
- Folic Acid (folate): Ideally,, you start taking at least 800 micrograms (mcg) or 0.8 milligrams (mg) of folic acid before conceiving. This helps prevent Neural Tube Defects (NTD’s a spine-development defect of the fetus). There is also new research suggesting that this decreases risks of abnormal development of the fetus’ heart as well.
- Vitamin D, Calcium Iron, and Omega-3 fatty acids are also important in pregnancy for both your health and the health of the baby.
- Vaccination history and immunity. We generally recommend laboratory testing to determine your blood type and whether or not you are immune to certain illness which can affect pregnancy like rubella (German measles) and varicella (Chicken pox).
- We also offer screening for cystic fibrosis, a genetic disease that can affect all organs, but primarily the lungs and digestive tracts. People who carry one gene for cystic fibrosis are asymptomatic. Cystic fibrosis is caused by a recessive gene, so both parents would have to be carriers in order to have an affected baby. This can be tested by doing a simple blood test. For more information, please go to: www.acog.org/
We look forward to being a part of your pathway to a healthy pregnancy and journey toward parenthood! If you have non-emergency questions, please give us a call at (608) 729-6300 or e-mail us at
Your Visit to Our Clinic, Our Location, Newly Pregnant