Expectant parents in Washington State who carefully select a health care provider to take care of the mother and baby during the nine months of pregnancy through to labor and delivery have taken a big step toward protecting the health of their new loved one. It is always important, however, that patients remain aware of their rights and the types of testing and care they should receive in the event that a doctor fails to suggest the right tests that may miss details they need to know.
As explained by WebMD, prenatal testing can do many things including identifying serious genetic conditions or alerting parents to potential birth defects. There are different types of tests that should be performed at different stages of a woman's pregnancy. Pregnancy-related conditions like preeclampsia may also be discovered thanks to prenatal care and tests.
According to the March of Dimes, the types of tests that a pregnant woman should undergo may fall into one of two categories. The first type of test is used to screen mothers or babies for potential problems. These tests are not intended to confirm any problems but highlight the potential chance that a condition may exist. The second type of test is for diagnostic purposes and should be looked at as a means of determining what problem exists so that decisions by health care teams and parents may be made.
Some tests are often administered to all pregnant women but other tests are used only based on a woman's level of risk. This may vary based on the mother's age, the family history of both parents and other factors.