Health Chats
Pregnancy: What to Expect from Conception to Birth
Wednesday May 06, 2009, 03:00PM - 04:00PM (EST)
Elaine Brown, MDBlank
Elaine Brown, MD - BLOG
gynecology, Billings, MT
The nine months of pregnancy are a time of excitement and anticipation of the day you greet your newborn, but it can also be a time of change and anxiety as your body adapts to the little one growing inside of you. You've probably received a lot of advice about what you should and should not do during a pregnancy, what is safe for the baby and what isn't, and what is normal and what isn't. Learn all about what to expect and when to expect it - from hearing the baby's heartbeat for the first time to feeling that kick from inside, from morning sickness to cravings - and learn to differentiate between old wives' tales and scientific research. From trying to conceive to the first trimester to labor, learn what to expect during your pregnancy in this live health chat with Dr. Elaine Brown, MedHelp's resident expert on Fertility, Pregnancy, and Gynecology.<br><br> Dr. Brown is an expert in women's health. She did her internship at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard University – Brigham & Women’s Hospital, where she also completed her OB/GYN residency. With the help of her husband, who is also a doctor, and her indispensable "right-hand" 7-year-old daughter, Jacey, Dr. Brown is currently on leave and enjoying her time with newborn triplets James, Jay and Jacob. As a mother of four, Dr. Brown is uniquely qualified to answer your questions from a professional and personal perspective.
MedHelp:
Hello and welcome to the Pregnancy Chat with Dr. Elaine Brown. This chat will be live at 3pm EST, but feel free submit your questions ahead of time.
MedHelp:
Welcome and Thank you to Dr. Elaine Brown for joining us here today to answer our questions about pregnancy.  
Elaine Brown, MD:
Hi Squeakyquynh! Yes, maybe so.  The first thing I would suggest is trying ovulation predictors on cycle days 11-16.  Those are also your most fertile days.  So do your "homework" on those days too!
Elaine Brown, MD:
Hi brooklyn_gal
Elaine Brown, MD:
Hi brooklyn_gal!
Elaine Brown, MD:
Have you tried a pelvic support?  There are lots of different kinds of straps and wraps that help to elevate the babies out of the pelvis.  Also some Yoga, stretches and perhaps physical therapy
Elaine Brown, MD:
Hi again Squeaky!
Elaine Brown, MD:
If you are in condition to run, you can go ahead--we don't recommend INCREASING your exercise level when pregnant, but you can continue to do what you are already conditioned for
squeakyquynh:
My husband and I have trying to get pregnant for 5 months now. But by trying...we're not timing intercourse around ovulation, etc, we just stopped using contraception. Do we need to start getting more aggressive in order to have any chance of getting pregnant this year?
Voyager92:
Are blighted ovums a once in a lifetime thing? I miscarried last year about 14 wks, and they said it was that, but what came out was literally the shape of an egg about the size of my fists and i was in soooo much pain during, contractions?
Elaine Brown, MD:
Hi Voyager92!
Elaine Brown, MD:
It doesn't sound like you had a blighted ovum.  A few things are against that--the size of the conceptus and the late stage of the pregnancy.  But if there was no fetus, then that is what we call it.  Yes. they are USUALLY once in a lifetime.
KristieN:
We tried to have a baby twice and got pregnant right away, but I had miscarriage.  I tested myself and everything came out normal.  My question is if my husband should get himself tested too?  
Elaine Brown, MD:
Hi KristieN
Elaine Brown, MD:
He could get tested--the only two tests that I know of for men are the sperm DNA fragmentation analysis--this is new, and a high amount of fragmentation of the DNA has been correlated with miscarriages. The other test would be a karyotype.  Both tests are pretty pricey!
Jeaneen:
Could I be preg? I had a short period may1 to 4th.  My breasts are more tender than usual and larger than usual.  The side of my breast where my milk glands are is sore and nipples are sensitive.  Had a tubal reversal in 07.  Will be excited if i am! I'm peeing a lot still working on my first glass of koolaid from 8...
Elaine Brown, MD:
Hi Jeaneen!
Elaine Brown, MD:
Yes, its possible.  Its too soon to tell though if your period was just a few days ago.  Unless it wasn't a real period.  If it was extra light, It could have been implantation bleeding.  You could do a test, but if neg, I would repeat the first of June
Voyager92:
Ok, Well, even at 12 weeks we never found a heart beat
Elaine Brown, MD:
well, that does sound like a blighted ovum.  Didn't they do an ultrasound for you?
JenP78:
Hi Dr Brown.. I just had an HSG done- everything was normal and now my doctor has prescribed me prometrium 200 mg... We have been trying for 2 years. What does the prometrium 200 mg help with besides heavy menstrual?
Elaine Brown, MD:
Hi JenP78
Elaine Brown, MD:
I'm glad your HSG looked good.  Prometrium is progesterone.  It will help to clean out the lining of your uterus, and to support a pregnancy if you conceive.  It WONT help you ovulate though. So if you don't ovulate regularly, you may want to  request clomid or femara too
sk123:
Are there certain foods that should be avoided during pregnancy? I've heard you have to avoid sushi, but I love sushi. Are there others?
Elaine Brown, MD:
Hisk123
Elaine Brown, MD:
The concern about sushi is twofold--one is the potential for parasites the other is the mercury content.  For the same reason, we recommend that you don't consume fish more than once per week.  We recommend that you thoroughly cook all lunchmeats and also avoid unprocessed cheeses like Jalisco.
laurenmichelle:
I think I read that you have triplets - is this true (or did I make it up?).  And if so, did you notice more exacerbated symptoms during your pregnancy?  I am 18 weeks pregnant with twins and feel like I need to sit down every three minutes!  I also hear my heart beating loudly in my ears (a cardiologist checked me out and I'm fine)... I was always very active before so it's disheartening to feel so weak now (even with a great diet, adequate fluid and sleep), especially with comments from other women "I ran through my 6th month - why do you look so pale?"  Help!
Elaine Brown, MD:
Hilaurenmichelle
Elaine Brown, MD:
congratulations!  My boys are VERY REAL!  Yes, I've had two pregnancies.  I worked till noon with my first girl and delivered her at 7PM.  With my boys, I could sleep 23 hours a day and wake up tired.  It DOES get better.
JenP78:
I had blood tests for ovulation- everything again seemed fine. I'm now keeping track of my temp., hopefully I can really figure out those days that I ovulate, though I can feel when I do.
Elaine Brown, MD:
Many women do know when they ovulate.  Ovulation predictors and a day 21 progesterone level are also a good way to confirm that.  Remember that ovulation predictors turn positive 24-48 hours BEFORE ovulation
JenP78:
Ill definitely talk to my doctor and try those... thank you!