FAQ’s for our New Moms

By: Sandra Cisneros, RN

Sometimes getting pregnant is just as scary as the journey itself. After all the work to get to pregnancy, couples are petrified of anything that could jeopardize the pregnancy. The good news is that most pregnancies that have had two normal ultrasounds with a good fetal heartbeat each time and good interval growth between the first and second ultrasound have a terrific chance of reaching live birth. Here are some of the most common questions that we get from patients.

What foods should I avoid?

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) has developed a document to assist patients with understanding the safety recommendations around food during pregnancy. If provides the most current evidence based research on this topic. It can be found at this link (http://www.acog.org/Patients/FAQs/Nutrition-During-Pregnancy)

Can I have intercourse?

In general, the answer is yes. By the time that you leave your fertility physician, you are likely between 6-10 weeks pregnant. The pregnancy is well implanted by this time. In most cases, intercourse is fine. However, if you have had vaginal bleeding during the first weeks of pregnancy or have had bleeding after intercourse, your physician may recommend that you abstain from intercourse.

When should I see my obstetrician?

You should plan to see your obstetrician between 8-10 weeks. Each office will have specific guidelines. This allows your physician to order certain blood tests and ultrasounds to further confirm the health of the pregnancy.

Am I now considered a “high-risk” pregnancy?

In general, the use of fertility treatment to conceive does not make your pregnancy high-risk. There are specific reasons that you may, however, fall into that category. Some examples include high-order multiples (more than twins), diabetes, maternal age, or high blood pressure to name a few. Typically, your obstetrician will refer you to the high-risk service if they deem it necessary.

When should I tell people that I am pregnant?

This is a very individual question and there is no right answer. Usually couples wait because they are trying to ensure that the pregnancy is “ok” – meaning that the risk for miscarriage or genetic abnormality is low. In general, pregnancies in which there have been two normal ultrasounds, which show good interval growth and positive heartbeat, are likely to reach live birth. Many couples already know that their pregnancy is genetically normal from embryo biopsy. If you are using non-invasive prenatal testing, chorionic villus sampling or amniocentesis, you may want to wait for those results. If the only parameter is time, typically most miscarriages happens within the first trimester (by then end of 12 weeks of pregnancy).

Can I exercise?

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommends that women become active and exercise at least 30 minutes on most, if not all, days of the week. This will decrease symptoms of pregnancy including backaches, constipation, bloating and swelling. It may help prevent or treat gestational diabetes. It will improve your mood and energy.

Safe forms of exercise include walking, swimming, cycling, and aerobics. Women who were runners prior to pregnancy can likely continue during their pregnancy. Activities to avoid are generally those with a high risk of falling. Examples include gymnastics, water skiing and horseback riding. In addition, downhill skiing, contact sports and scuba diving are not recommended.

For further information refer to the ACOG document

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Sandra Cisneros, RN, Ms. Cisneros is an IVF Nurse at Lane Fertility Institute. She has been in the field for almost 20 years. After receiving her nursing degree from the College of San Mateo in 1993, she began her career in the field of fertility. She has worked at Pacific Fertility Center and UCSF Center for Reproductive Health prior to her current position. Ms. Cisneros’ goals are to help patients achieve their dreams of being parents. She strives to lessen their stress along the way. She is currently very interested in empowering women to take control of their future fertility with egg freezing and embryo banking.