Blood type and Rh factor
Rh is a protein found on most people’s red blood cells. If you do not have the protein, you are Rh negative. Most pregnant women who are Rh negative need treatment (Rhogam shot) to protect the fetus from getting a blood disease that can lead to anemia.
Anemia occurs when the amount of hemoglobin (the substance that carries oxygen to organs) or red blood cells is reduced.
Hepatitis is a viral disease that attacks the liver. There are several types of the hepatitis virus. Hepatitis A is spread by poor hygiene through a method called fecal-oral transmission. There is a risk of pre-term labor and delivery if a patient becomes severely infected. A vaccine is available if you and your doctor determine this is best for you. All pregnant women are tested for hepatitis B. Babies can get hepatitis B from an infected mother during pregnancy and birth. Women considered at risk are tested for hepatitis C.
An oral glucose challenge test is given between 24 and 28 weeks. You will be asked to drink a special sugary solution. Then, your glucose level will be determined after one hour. If your blood sugar is too high, we will ask you to do a more involved three- hour test. All women are screened for diabetes prior to pregnancy and between 24 and 28 weeks.
Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is the virus that infects and destroys the body’s immune cells and causes a disease called AIDS. HIV and AIDS infection are lifelong—there is no cure, but there are many medicines to fight both HIV infections and the infections and cancers that come with it.
Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs)
STIs can complicate your pregnancy and can affect your baby’s health. Some STIs — chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis and trichomoniasis — can be cured with antibiotics that can be taken during pregnancy. Viral STIs such as genital herpes have no cure; however, medicine reduces symptoms and steps can be taken to lower the risk of passing the infection to the baby.
Rubella, also known as German measles, virus causes rash, mild fever and arthritis. If a woman gets rubella while pregnant, she is put at risk for a miscarriage or her baby could be born with serious birth defects.
Urine is collected at every appointment to test for protein, glucose, bacteria and urinary tract infections (UTIs).
Other testing may be directed based on your medical, surgical, obstetric and family history.
Cell-free DNA screening
This type of screening tests for fetal disorders by analyzing fragments of DNA in the mother’s blood. All pregnant women are offered this screening after 10 weeks of pregnancy. It can test for trisomies 13, 18 and 21 and the sex chromosomes. A positive result indicates an increased risk for genetic abnormalities. False positive and false negative results are possible. Diagnostic testing is available if the woman chooses to further identify her risk for genetic diseases such as Down syndrome, cystic fibrosis, Tay-Sachs disease and sickle cell disease.
This rarely used test is only done in high-risk pregnancies.
This is an infection caused by the parasite named Toxoplasma gondii that can invade tissues and damage the brain, especially in a fetus and a newborn baby. Symptoms include fever, fatigue, headache, swollen lymph glands and muscle aches and pains. It can be contracted by: touching the hands to the mouth after gardening; cleaning a cat’s litter box or anything that came into contact with cat feces; by eating raw or partly cooked meat; or touching the hands to the mouth after touching raw or undercooked meat.
Cystic fibrosis (CF) is one of the most common serious genetic diseases. CF causes the body to make abnormal secretions leading to mucous build-up. CF mucous build-up can impair organs such as the pancreas, intestines and the lungs. CF is not visible on an ultrasound and cannot be treated before birth.
Maternal Serum screen
This is an optional test at 15-20 weeks to determine the risk of open spina bifida or neural tube defects.
Fetal Well Being Tests
Higher risk pregnancies may have tests of fetal well being. These tests are designed to monitor the health of the baby and the function of the placenta. These tests usually will begin around 32 weeks for high risk pregnancies, but may begin earlier or later depending on the pregnancy complication.
Common tests of fetal well being are:
• Nonstress test: fetal heart rate is continuously monitored for 15-30 minutes or more
• Amniotic fluid test: ultrasound is used to measure amniotic fluid
• Biophysical profile: combines ultrasound and nonstress test
We encourage all obstetrical patients to look into prenatal classes at Cabell Huntington Hospital. Childbirth classes are available as well as classes on breastfeeding, infant CPR, new baby care, and sibling classes. For information or to register, please call 304-526-BABY.
Community service organizations
- Cabell County Family Resource Network: 304-697-0255
- United Way, Cabell County Substance Abuse Prevention Partnership, Education Matters, Financial Stability and Success by 6: 304-523-8929
- Huntington City Mission: 304-523-0293
Early childhood/development/day care
- Birth to Three: 304-523-5444
- Head Start & Pre-K: 304-697-4600
- LINK Child Care Resource & Referral: 1-800-894-9540
- TEAM for WV Children: 304-523-9587
- WV Help Me Grow: 1-800-642-8522
- Cabell-Huntington Health Department: 304-523-6483
- Ebenezer Medical Outreach: 304-529-0753
- Medicaid: 304-528-5800
- WIC – Cabell County: 1-800-953-1009/304-302-2013
- WV Children’s Health Insurance Program: 1-877-WVACHIP
- Family Child Care Food Program: 304-751-5253
Crisis and emergency needs
- Maternal Addiction & Recovery Center (MARC): 304-691-8730
- Abuse Hotlines (children and adult protective services, domestic violence): 1-800-352-6513
- Branches Domestic Violence Shelter: 304-529-2382
- Information & Referral (referrals, utility assistance, food and clothing pantries, etc.): 304-528-5660
- Poison Control Center: 1-800-222-1222
- Marshall OB Concern Line: 681-378-4662