Hesperian Health Guides
Chapter 8: Prenatal Checkups
Every day 20,000 people visit the HealthWiki for lifesaving health information. A gift of just $5 helps make this possible!
Make a gift to support this essential health information people depend on.
The regular prenatal (pregnancy) checkup has 3 main parts: talking with the mother, checking the mother’s body, and checking the baby. Try to write down what you learn about the mother and baby during each visit.
For each part of the checkup, we list healthy signs and warning signs. If you find a warning sign, be sure to follow instructions for what to do. You may be able to take care of the woman yourself or she may need medical help. At times we suggest that you get medical advice. This means you will need a skilled health worker or doctor to help you decide if there is an emergency or if the woman is OK. If no doctor is willing to give you advice, you will have to send the woman to a medical center for help.
WARNING! The following are the most important warning signs to look for in a pregnant woman:
- bleeding from the vagina
- severe pain in the belly
- high fever
- high blood pressure, headache, dizziness, or blurred vision
At each checkup, remind the mother to get medical help if she has any of these signs.