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Third trimester, provider appointment #9 (week 40)

Your healthcare provider is a hugely valuable resource for you as you head down the homestretch of pregnancy – make sure you get your questions ready!

Although this is your last anticipated pre-natal visit, many moms will have either already given birth and moved to the postpartum area of gynecological medicine, or have belly tenants who may stay in for a couple more weeks, requiring a couple more visits. This is another 15-minute check-up, and as always, your healthcare provider will take your weight, blood pressure, and have you provide a urine sample which will be tested for elevated levels of sugar and protein. Your healthcare provider will also take Baby’s heart rate with a fetal doppler, measure your womb to get a sense of his growth, and discuss his week-to-week movements with you.

Your healthcare provider may keep looking for and measuring your cervical dilation and effacement to get as accurate as possible a read on when baby will be born. Your cervix will expand from the most-of-pregnancy 0 cm, to about 5-6 cm during labor, and then finally to about 10 cm when baby is finally ready to come out.

You should also speak to your healthcare provider about the plan if you don’t go into labor by 41 weeks.


Reviewed by Dr. Jamie Lo
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Sources
  • Mayo Clinic Staff. “Fetal development: The third trimester.” Mayo Clinic. Mayo Clinic, 7/11/2014. Web.
  • “Prenatal care in your third trimeser.” U.S National Library of Medicine. MedlinePlus, 6/11/2014. Web.
  • Mayo Clinic Staff. “Prenatal care: 3rd trimester visits.” Mayo Clinic. Mayo Clinic, 7/30/2015. Web.
  • Mayo Clinic Staff. “Signs of labor: Know what to expect.” Mayo Clinic. Mayo Clinic, 7/18/2013. Web.
  • Mayo Clinic Staff. “Third trimester pregnancy: What to expect.” Mayo Clinic. Mayo Clinic, 5/5/2014. Web.

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