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Pregnancy Bliss | Reproductive Health Hub

Contact Answers In the News Hot Topics


Feeling the baby’s movements

Question: i am 18 weeks 5 days pregnant but i am not feeling much fetal movement i think i do at times feel something but im not sure then i feel nothing at all for days. This is my third pregnancy my previous one being twins twenty years ago. Should i be feeling more movements at this stage of pregnancy? P.C. (UK)


Answer: It is by no means unusual not to feel fetal movements until around 20 weeks of gestation. In fact, the majority of first time mothers do not feel movements until after this point. The fact that your last pregnancy was 20 years ago may mean your body is behaving the same way as in a first pregnancy. Whatever you may have been feeling before are quite probably not true fetal movements. In any case, if you are concerned about fetal well-being, you can contact your midwife who can listen in to the baby’s heartbeat and your hearing that should give you the reassurance you need.




Vaginal birth after caesarean

Question:  My first pregnancy was ending by caesarean birth,  in my second pregnancy  what i can do for make the vaginal birth more easy. W. (Lebanon)


Answer: It is a little difficult to give you a specific answer without knowing why you had a caesarean section in the first place. However, it is important to know that the majority of women who have had caesarean section can successfully deliver vaginally next time around. There is nothing that you can do personally to make this more likely. What is important for you is to ensure you have regular antenatal care. Your doctor or midwife will then give you appropriate advice as to the feasibility and suitability of a vaginal birth. Issues that may lead to an advice against a vaginal birth include a very big baby, if the baby is leading with a breech rather than head, baby lying in a transverse position, a low-lying placenta etc. All in all, if everything is normal with your pregnancy and the previous caesarean delivery was uncomplicated, you should expect to be advised to try for a vaginal birth and chances of success are good.




Using heparin at Term

Question: What is the dosage of heparin in a pregnant woman at term? What mode of delivery is the best for her? R.


Answer: Unfortunately your question is lacking important details. Why is the woman having Heparin? Is it to prevent or is it a treatment for thrombosis that has already occurred? What type of heparin is she using? What is her body weight? You may find the answer given to an earlier question here useful in your case. Also you need to be aware that the dose of any type of heparin is the same whatever stage of pregnancy it might be, including at Term. The use of heparin in itself does not preclude vaginal delivery. Mode of delivery will be determined by the usual obstetric indications.




Sex with another partner during pregnancy

Question:  I’m 17 and three months pregnant. I have a new boyfriend and we want to have sex. Is that safe for my baby? A.G. (UK)


Answer: Sex during pregnancy does not and cannot cause harm to the baby in the womb. This is regardless of whether it is with the father of the baby or somebody else. Of-course the usual measures of safe sex should remain in place.




‘Too many’ chromosomes

Question: They said I had a little too much chromosome in test.  I was called in for amnio, although they said the baby looks fine....is this bad news!!! Waiting for test results which take 2 wks. D. (Bermuda)


Answer: OK; this is what I think has happened: You had a screening test which gave results suggesting that your baby in the womb may have a chromosomal disorder. A subsequent scan showed a normal looking fetus without the telltale features normally seen in babies with chromosomal disorders. It is true that most chromosomal disorders are those where there is an extra chromosome. That is, instead of 46 normal chromosomes that each cell is supposed to have, there will be 47. I think this is what you mean by “too much chromosome”. Now then; is this bad news? Not necessarily. The majority of people whose screening tests show high risk of a possible chromosomal disorder, amniocentesis results return completely normal results. It is inevitably nerve-racking for you while you await the results but, as stated above, there is a good chance the results will be normal. Best wishes.
































High blood pressure in pregnancy

Question: Hello, am 25 weeks pregnant and i have high blood pressure. I would like to know whether there is a risk in my baby's growth or my baby will be born under weight. Thank you! J. (Kenya)


Answer: I take it you were known to have high blood pressure before your pregnancy and therefore this is not pregnancy-induced. If your blood pressure is well-controlled using medication, it should not affect your baby in any way at all. There is, of-course, a slightly increased risk of the problem being complicated by the development of pre-eclampsia (which is discussed here). If that were to happen, it changes the picture somewhat. Pre-eclampsia could affect rate of blood flow to the placenta and therefore the baby and, among other things, can cause reduced growth. However, the more likely complication of pre-eclampsia is a forced pre-term delivery. Once again, I need to stress on the fact that uncomplicated well-controlled hypertension (high blood pressure) in pregnancy would and should not affect your baby’s well-being.

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Edward's syndrome

This is an illustration of Edward’s Syndrome chromosomal mapping, an example of a syndrome where there is more than the normal number of chromosomes. You can see that No. 18 has got 3 chromosomes, rather than two.