Congratulations on your pregnancy and welcome to Alana Obstetrics!
Continuity of care is important to us, as is sharing our knowledge and expertise. By booking your pregnancy with the Alana Obstetricians, you will be cared for by not one, but a group of specialist obstetricians, with regular case conferences and reviews for women with high risk or more complex pregnancies.
The Alana Obstetricians work on a roster system which means that the Obstetrician on call will manage all deliveries and emergencies during that 24 hour period. This means that the familiar face that greets you in the delivery suite will also be fresh and rested!
You can download our Obstetric Fee Disclosure here.
Booking your Antenatal Care with Alana Obstetrics
Please contact our rooms on 02 9009 5255 to arrange your first appointment. Ideally, your first appointment should take place when you are 8-12 weeks pregnant, but we are happy to accommodate your needs. As our doctors have a limited number of patients who they can deliver each month it is important to schedule your first appointment as soon as possible.
When calling Alana Healthcare, having the following information will assist with making your appointment:
- Date of last menstrual period (LMP) or expected date of confinement (EDC) or due date from dating scan
- Medicare number
- GP referral
Calculating your dates
Your estimated date of delivery is calculated using either the first day your last menstrual period or a first trimester ultrasound for dating. A normal pregnancy can last anywhere from 37-42 weeks duration, with only 5% of women delivering their baby on their due date.
A dating calculator can be used to estimate your due date if you know the date of your last menstrual period.
If you are uncertain of your dates, or you have an irregular period, the most accurate way to assess your due date is a first trimester ultrasound scan. If you have not already had a scan, your Alana Obstetrician will perform one on your first visit to help confirm your due date.
Routine Pregnancy Blood Tests
During your pregnancy, you will have a number of routine tests to ensure that the pregnancy is progressing well with no complications.
Antenatal screening blood tests: Ideally, these blood tests are performed prior to pregnancy to identify any potential issues and things that can be remedied (e.g. rubella vaccination for women with low immunity). If your GP has not already organised for you to have antenatal blood tests, these will be arranged at your first visit. These blood tests include screening for infections such as HIV, hepatitis B and C, syphilis, rubella, as well as your blood group and blood count.
Glucose challenge test (GCT) and glucose tolerance test (GTT): These blood tests are performed to determine whether you are developing gestational diabetes in the pregnancy. Usually performed at 26-28 weeks gestation, it requires you to drink a sugary liquid and wait at the pathology centre for an hour or two to measure your body’s response. This blood test usually requires an appointment. Be sure to take a good book or magazine!
Certain women have a higher risk of gestational diabetes in their pregnancy and may be recommended to have this test earlier, or on more than one occasion during your pregnancy.
Blood count and antibody screen: This is performed at the start of the pregnancy and again at 28 and 36 weeks gestation to look for anaemia (low iron levels). The antibody screen is particularly important for women who have a negative blood type and are at risk of rhesus isoimmunisation.
Delivering your baby with Alana Obstetrics
Our patients are delivered at the Prince of Wales Private Hospital. Please check with your private health insurer to make sure that you have the required level of cover and have completed any waiting requirements. If you have any questions, our staff will be happy to assist you.
The Alana Obstetricians believe in choices when it comes to delivering your baby. During your pregnancy care, we are more than happy to discuss all of the options available to you.
Vaginal delivery: Most women will have a vaginal delivery without requiring assistance from their Obstetrician.
Sometimes assisted delivery with the ventouse (vacuum) or forceps is required to ensure a safe delivery for you and your baby. Circumstances where this may be recommended include exhaustion, when the baby is coming down the birth canal in an awkward position, or if there is fetal distress while pushing.
Caesarean delivery (caesarean section): Some women will require a caesarean to deliver their baby. This may be elective and booked prior to going into labour (for placenta praevia, breech presentation, some types of twins, previous caesarean delivery), or may be an emergency caesarean after going into labour.
If you require a caesarean delivery they are most commonly performed under a spinal or epidural block so you can be awake and meet your baby. Your partner is also welcome in the operating theatre to support you.
Frequently Asked Questions
Ultrasound can take high quality images of many parts of your body, which makes it an excellent diagnostic tool. During pregnancy, an ultrasound is recommended for a number of reasons:
- For confirming the age of the baby and to predict the due date;
- To look at the baby as it develops throughout the various stages of pregnancy;
- To screen for chromosomal and other abnormalities (such as Down syndrome).
- Breakthrough bleeding: which happens as the pregnancy hormones interfere with the hormones of your normal menstrual cycle. This causes some the endometrial lining to be shed. Spotting or light bleeding may come and go for several days.
- Implantation bleeding: which happens when the fertilised egg implants in the endometrial lining of the uterus. The endometrial lining has been prepared for the nestling of the fertilised egg during the menstrual cycle and has now got a very good blood supply. The implantation may therefore be associated with some light bleeding.
- Other causes: which may include changes to your cervix by the pregnancy hormones; it softens the cervix and causes an area of cells covering the cervix to move towards the outside of the cervix. These cells are more prone to bleeding, especially when touched during intercourse. It is important to be up to date with your Pap smear screening tests as bleeding may also be caused by abnormal cells. Bleeding can also be linked to vaginal or cervical infection which would require further investigation with a vaginal swab and may need treatment. A harmless growth on the cervix called a polyp may also cause bleeding at any stage in the pregnancy. A speculum examination (as is done with the Pap smear) will reveal this polyp, and usually nothing needs to be done about it during your pregnancy.