The aim of this checkup is to find things that could affect your pregnancy. Identifying these factors before pregnancy allows you to take steps that can increase the chances of having a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby. During this visit, Dr Sem will ask about your diet and lifestyle, your medical and family history, medications you take, and any past pregnancies.
He will organise blood tests to exclude infective diseases which may affect your pregnancy.
All women considering a pregnancy should be aware of their vaccination status. Vaccination history for measles, mumps, Rubella, Varicella Zoster, Diphtheria, Tetanus and Pertussis should be checked and maintained as per recommendations published by the relevant Australian and New Zealand Government bodies.
Pre-pregnancy Rubella and Varicella immunisation should be considered for women with incomplete immunity.
It is recommended that folic acid should be taken for a minimum of one month before conception and for the first 3 months of pregnancy. The recommended dose of folic acid is at least 500 microgram daily to aid the prevention of neural tube defects (NTD) or spina bifida.
Where there is an increased risk of NTD (on anti epilepsy medication, pre-pregnancy diabetes mellitus, previous child or family history of NTD), a higher 5 milligram daily dose should be used.
The NHMRC recommends women should start a dietary supplementation of 150mcg of iodine prior to a planned pregnancy or as soon as possible after finding out they are pregnant.