An obstetric consultation is an opportunity for a woman to meet with a doctor to discuss the details of her pregnancy. Regular visits with a doctor throughout a pregnancy are recommended, because they allow for professional monitoring of the woman's and baby's health. These consultations also provide time for the woman and doctor to develop a trusting relationship, and discuss any possible health issues that may affect her and her baby.
The Initial Obstetric Consultation
During the initial obstetric consultation, the patient will be able to ask questions about the pregnancy and what it will entail. A physical examination is given, and a thorough review of the patient's medical history is made. Tests performed during the various consultations may include the following:
- Blood tests
- Fetal heart tones
- Blood pressure
The patient's weight is recorded at every consultation so that it can be monitored during the pregnancy.
During the initial obstetric consultation, the doctor and patient usually discuss the various lifestyle changes the patient needs to make, if any, to ensure a healthy pregnancy. In addition to maintaining regularly scheduled healthcare appointments, the following recommendations may be made:
- Maintain a healthy diet
- Take prenatal vitamins or supplements
- Avoid exposure to harmful chemicals
- Get necessary vaccinations
- Establish an exercise regimen
- Manage any preexisting health issues
- Minimize travel
An initial obstetric consultation is usually recommended for an expectant mother approximately 8 weeks after her last menstrual period.