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First-Trimester Exams and Tests

Table of Contents


Overview

At each prenatal visit during your first trimester, you'll be weighed and have your blood pressure checked. Your urine may also be checked for bacteria, protein, or sugar.

As early as weeks 10 to 12, you may be able to hear your baby's heartbeat using a Doppler ultrasound. By the 20th week, the heart tone is strong enough to hear with a special type of stethoscope.

Depression screening

Your care provider may ask questions about your health and your feelings to find out if you're depressed. Depression is common during pregnancy and after giving birth (postpartum). Experts recommend that all pregnant women be screened for depression. If it isn't treated, depression can cause problems during pregnancy and after birth.

Testing for genetic conditions and birth defects

You can choose whether to have tests for certain conditions, such as Down syndrome. First-trimester tests can be done around 10 to 13 weeks of pregnancy. Options include:

If you have your first prenatal visit during your second trimester, you'll have more than these tests. Other tests you may have include tests for blood type, anemia, and HIV. You may be screened for hepatitis B, sexually transmitted infections, or thyroid disease. You'll also be checked for past infections, such as syphilis or rubella (German measles).


Credits for First-Trimester Exams and Tests

Current as of: October 8, 2020

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:
Sarah Marshall MD - Family Medicine
Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine
Kirtly Jones MD - Obstetrics and Gynecology
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