Most pregnancies are healthy and proceed without complications or medical concerns. But to ensure that you and your baby are doing well — and to catch any potential health issues early — your provider offers several kinds of routine laboratory tests throughout your pregnancy.
Our caring doctors and certified nurse midwives at Westover Hills Women’s Health recommend laboratory testing for two reasons:
- To identify concerns that may require further testing or follow-up
- To reassure you that your pregnancy is proceeding in a normal, healthy way
Usually, laboratory tests are negative, meaning they find no problems that require further action. If a test does deliver positive results, we explain the next steps for you to consider.
To help set your expectations, we’re happy to share the following information with you about the laboratory tests that we routinely recommend during pregnancy.
We conduct routine urine tests at many of your appointments. Urine tests check for various conditions, including urinary tract infections, gestational diabetes, healthy kidney function, and preeclampsia.
If a urine test uncovers an abnormality, further testing can help us learn more about what’s going on with you and/or your baby.
A small sample of blood can give us a large amount of information about your pregnancy.
For example, a complete blood count (CBC) at the start of your pregnancy can check for conditions such as anemia, clotting disorders, immunity to rubella, and a range of infections, including viral, bacterial, and sexually transmitted infections.
Blood tests can also determine your blood type and Rh factor status. If your baby has a different Rh factor than you, they need treatment after birth to protect them from developing a potentially serious type of anemia.
Later in your pregnancy, we offer you blood tests that check for factors related to chromosome abnormalities in your baby, as well as biochemical markers related to certain birth defects. These blood tests may be paired with other types of screening.
If you are due for a Pap test during pregnancy, we give you one. Pap tests check for the presence of abnormal cells that could later develop into cervical cancer.
In addition to routine lab tests, we may recommend other types of tests, such as ultrasound, genetic testing, amniocentesis, chorionic villus sampling, and a glucose challenge/tolerance test.
With each of these tests, we explain what they are, who typically has them, how they are conducted, and whether they make sense for you, based on your age, personal health, family health history, and other factors.
If you have questions or concerns about any type of prenatal testing, please reach out to us at our offices in San Antonio, Texas.
Care for all your pregnancy needs
The best gift you can give yourself and your baby is high-quality medical care throughout your pregnancy.
To schedule a preconception visit, prenatal appointments, prenatal testing, or other types of checkups at one of our two offices, we invite you to call us today or use our online tool to book an appointment.