The next step in pregnancy is to run a blood test and urine sample. Above you will see my results, which are fairly unremarkable! My next blood test will be a glucose tolerance test done at 24 weeks to see if I have gestational diabetes. The reason for these tests? The first set of tests is a very basic CBC (Complete Blood Count), which is primarily done to diagnose anemia. If the answer was yes, then you would see the following numbers drop below the “normal” range.
Red Blood Cell Count: normal range= (apx.4.0-5.40)
Hemoglobin: normal range= (apx.11.8-15.8)
Hematocrit: normal range= (apx.37-48)
The next test is the urine analysis to determine if there are glucose issues or liver or kidney problems that occur with excessively high blood pressure known as pre-eclampsia. There can also be pre-existing conditions that cause some of these.
The last test is determining blood type, which is important because it can cause baby complications. When you look at my blood type you will notice that I am O+ which is the most common blood type. The significant portion is the Rh antigen and whether it is positive or negative. In my case the positive means that I have the Rh antigen. Problems arise when the mother is Rh – and the father is Rh + and passes that on to the fetus. This means that the mother will build antibodies against the baby and react as allergic if blood mixes between mom and baby. This will attack the proteins of the baby’s blood and cause a disease in the baby called hemolytic disease or hemolytic anemia, which can cause brain damage or even death in the most serious of cases. The treatment, which I won’t have since I am Rh+, is Rh immunoglobin in an injection form given to the mom usually before 28 weeks.
These easy blood and urine tests will ensure that you are taking the best care possible of yourself and baby during pregnancy!