In your fourth month, your skin and muscles are starting to stretch to accommodate your growing baby. As your uterus grows, you might notice sharp side aches that come with sudden movements such as coughing or sneezing. These are normal and are called round ligament pain. Your baby’s arms and legs are moving and it will begin responding to outside stimuli. You may be able to hear the baby’s heartbeat and you may be able to determine its gender on an ultrasound.
By the end of this time you’ll have reached the midpoint of your pregnancy. You’ll most likely be feeling the baby move, called quickening. By the end of the 20th week, the baby weighs about 9 ounces. It’s moving often, and can hear sounds, make facial expressions and even get the hiccups.
In your sixth month, you pregnant stomach is definitely noticeable. You may notice cramping or swelling in your legs and feet or aches in your lower back. Your baby is becoming more proportioned now and is starting to resemble a newborn. White blood cells are forming to combat disease and infection.
You may notice stretch marks as your uterus continues to expand. You’ll be gaining about one pound each week. With the added weight, you may experience changes in your balance or mobility. Your baby’s skin becomes transparent and the heartbeat can be heard now through a stethoscope. The hands are active and the baby may suck its thumb. Your baby can also cry.
As your body changes, you may experience certain symptoms, many of which are common during pregnancy. Choose your symptom below to find causes and recommended treatments. If you don’t see your symptom here, or have additional questions, please email us.
In the second trimester, around 15–20 weeks of pregnancy, we will perform either an AFP test to find neural tube defects or a quad screen test to detect signs of Down’s Syndrome or chromosome disorders. Combined with the nuchal fold screening, Down’s Syndrome or other chromosome disorders are detected about 90–95% of the time. If the test results are abnormal, an amniocentesis is offered. This is a diagnostic test involving the removal of an amniotic fluid sample. The sample is tested for the number and arrangement of chromosomes.
During pregnancy, hormone changes can affect insulin and cause gestational diabetes. Uncontrolled diabetes can lead to several problems, including preterm labor and certain birth defects. To test for diabetes, your glucose level is measured in a blood sample that is taken after you drink a sugar solution. If your glucose is elevated, an additional diagnostic test will be performed to detect diabetes.
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Edina, MN 55435
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Maple Grove, MN 55369
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