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Health Tips for April 24

Posted Apr 23 2009 11:41pm

Health Tip: Blood Tests During Pregnancy

If you're pregnant, your doctor may prescribe a series of tests to make sure there aren't any health problems that need to be addressed before you give birth.

The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology says blood work may ordered to check for the following things:

  • Hepatitis B virus.
  • Syphilis, HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases.
  • Rubella (German measles).
  • Blood glucose levels (to test for gestational diabetes).
  • Anemia.
  • Your blood type, and that of the fetus.
  • Cystic fibrosis carrier testing.

Health Tip: Learning About Ectopic Pregnancy

When the fertilized egg doesn't make it to the uterus and begins to grow elsewhere in the reproductive system -- in the fallopian tube, abdomen, ovary or cervix -- it's called an ectopic pregnancy.

This is a serious condition that requires a doctor's diagnosis and treatment.

The American Academy of Family Physicians offers this list of common risk factors for ectopic pregnancy:

  • Having endometriosis.
  • Having had a pelvic infection (such as pelvic inflammatory disease) or surgery around the pelvis.
  • Being a smoker.
  • Being older than 35.
  • Infertility problems or treatment.
  • Fallopian tube abnormalities or inflammation.
  • Having had a previous ectopic pregnancy.
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