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What tests do you avoid and why?

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

Also, what tests do you believe are most important and why?

post #2 of 14

We don't do the Quad Screen/Triple Screen (which you're offered depends on what doctor or midwife you use). I tend to be overly anxious, so for me, it is better to have an unexpected anomaly than to have a false positive. We do the 20 week anatomy scan, which I know can miss a lot (and I've said as much to other posters, so it's not that I think it will detect everything) but I'm comfortable enough with it, knowing that I'm not high risk for anything, to just let it go at that.


I skipped the glucose screen this time, but I opted for home monitoring instead, so it's not like I decided GD wasn't important. I just decided I didn't want to deal with the misery that accompanied that stupid test. It makes me sick and I didn't want to get sick.

post #3 of 14

I skip just about everything invasive.


It is easier to say what tests i do do.

1. first blood draw in the beginning. -i think it's good for my care provider to have a base or at least beginning numbers to go from if something comes up later.


2. GBS swap - easy to do myself if I'm given the choice. Also, my MW (at the time) felt more strongly about this one then i did.  lol  - i don't know about this one, we haven't gotten to that point.


I know we aren't going to terminate and these tests are not 100% so why put myself through any sort of stress over something I can't/won't change?  

post #4 of 14

I am fine with any type of blood/ urine test, BP monitoring, etc. I did Maternity21 instead of 1st trimester screening.

CVS and amnio are a no-no for me.

I want to avoid/ minimize anything that might disturb the baby or my cervix: manual cervical checks, ultrasounds, doppler (instead rely on fetal movement and, later fetoscope). I will have the 18 week ultrasound, though, but will ask them to give me the fast version to minimize exposure. 

post #5 of 14

I skip most everything. I do pee sticks at MW appointments, I had one ultrasound each with my first two kids and a couple more than that this time around, because I had a really scary, weeks long episode of bleeding in the early second tri and my anxiety was through the roof and so I was cool with a little more "let's check and see what's going on" than I normally might be. My MW really prefers to do the GBS swab...I used to think that was dumb, but went with it because it's non-invasive and I know that she would just do a cleanse with me directly before birth...now I don't see it as dumb at all and gladly consent. It's non-invasive and gives a piece of information which is just good to know. If I know, I can do the vaginal cleanse before birth and really not have to think about it.

Other than that, I decline everything. I have routine blood testing done at the beginning of pregnancy to check for deficiencies...but beyond that, unless I'm feeling a physical/intuitive need to investigate further, good nutrition, prenatal visits, etc has been good enough for me.

post #6 of 14

This is my first pregnancy, and we're skipping most of the testing, although I did have blood drawn and I do the pee tests at each meeting with my midwife.  We aren't planning any ultrasounds-- I agree with the pp, since I'm not at risk for anything and I tend to be anxious, I would rather deal with a surprise later than risk a false (or even real) positive and worry for the rest of my pregnancy.  I find that repeating the mantra/affirmation "my baby is happy and healthy" helps me calm down if I get anxious.   I guess I will also do the GD screening-- my midwife says we do this with a meal, so I'm hoping that means I don't have to drink anything gross!


I'm not *opposed* to ultrasounds, and we do use the doppler at each appointment (3 times so far at 22 weeks) to hear the heartbeat.  I considered not doing that, but it is just SO FUN to hear the heartbeat, and my little guy or gal is not that active, so it always makes me feel better to hear it.    If my midwife wanted me to get an ultrasound I would do it. 

post #7 of 14

No tests here outside of pee sticks, and monitoring glucose at home when the time comes to test for GD. But I am only doing that for my own sense of health, not because midwives think it is a necessary test. 


Last hospital pregnancy I did urine testing, GBS, GD (but wish I would have said no to that awful experience) & ultrasounds. All complete wastes of time & healthy energy in my opinion.

post #8 of 14
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the answers so far.  We are hoping to get pregnant with # three in a few months so I am trying to think this through.  You would think I would remember since I've done this all twice but I can't.  DD1 I did everything.  DD2 my HBMW explained everything and everything was our choice (loved that).  This next time will be with an OB and I know I need to figure it out ahead of time. 


I do want to avoid the GD test since I know I was very low risk for that.  How do you monitor at home?

post #9 of 14

I consented to the 12 week blood work and the iron tests (just finger pricks at 12 and 27 weeks I think?). I do the pee sticks, blood pressure, and HR via a fetoscope (no doppler, will consent to the doppler during later stages of labor if warranted) at each appointment. No routine VE's although with each kid I've requested one at the very end of labor (I tend to have a lot of self-doubt during transition but hoping to avoid that this time). We will have the PKU done when the baby is a week old. We opt out of everything else (including US) unless there is a specific reason to warrant further investigation. As long as baby and I are healthy, the rest of it seems totally unnecessary but everyone is different and everyone should do whatever they are comfortable with!

post #10 of 14

Pee sticks, though I've never had trouble, but it's non-invasive and no biggie to me. I do blood work because I have hypothyroidism and need to keep an eye on it. Ditto for iron, vit D. I was way low on D, so that was a worthwhile test. 


No u/s this time. They caused me so much stress with #1 & #2, that I just decided no way. No NT scan or amnio or any of that either. I'm 44, so if I were seeing an OB, I'm sure I'd get pressure to do those, but my midwife didn't even suggest them. I am low risk other than my age, and so far, all is normal. 

post #11 of 14


Originally Posted by CoBabyMaker View Post

I do want to avoid the GD test since I know I was very low risk for that.  How do you monitor at home?


Just buy a blood glucose meter and some test strips, then keep track for a few days at 28 weeks. Test first thing when you get up in the morning, then one hour after each meal. One hour after a meal means one hour after the first bite of food. :) Do that for a few days. If your readings are all good, then you are likely fine. Personally, I was normal at 28 weeks, but not at 30 weeks. Intuition just had me keep testing, and it turned out to be right. GD doesn't always start right at 28 weeks. Oh, and glucometers are really not expensive at all - less than $20. The strips are pretty pricey, though. If you aren't so opposed to WalMart that you refuse to ever go there, they sell a brand, ReliOn, that's only about $10, and 100 strips are only $35 or so. Other brands, the strips are usually about 50 to 100% more expensive.


Oh, and normal readings for a pregnant woman are:


Fasting: Under 81

One hour after meals: Under 123

Two hours after meals: Under 111


A fasting level needs to be first thing in the morning, 8 to 12 hours after you last ate. Don't fast all morning and then do it. Do it right when you wake up. Those levels I listed are what are truly normal. A weird high reading every now and then can be caused by illness or stress, so don't worry about it if you just get one very, very rarely, but if you see a pattern, you should be aware that you're outside the norm. And if you do get a very high reading, always repeat the test with another strip, since it could've just been food particles on your finger or something. I had that happen once and it scared the bejezus out of me, lol.


Oh yes, as to being very low risk, so was I. No diabetes in my family, no GD in my prior 2 pregnancies. The only thing that puts me at a higher risk is being over the age of 25 (I'm 33).

post #12 of 14

It's easier for me to say what we do.  We had one HB transfer, and are trying for a HBAC now.  We haven't changed what we do:


-11 week appt blood test (I can be anemic) and doppler at every appt.  

- GD test, but just with grape juice and normal eating

- 20 week US only


- no cervical checks for the most part, unless there is a compelling reason and I ask for one


We don't do any screens or genetic tests, pee sticks, dating US, amnio/CVS... routinely, but I would do anything if a medical reason presented itself.  

post #13 of 14

i am doing the pee sticks, BP and HR with a fetoscope at each midwife appointment. have had no doppler but might do a few HR checks during labour with it if it's really awkward to use the fetoscope. no GD testing as i am low risk.


i did do bloodwork early on and again recently to check my iron which was on the low side. we also had a 12 week ultrasound, but have since decided to avoid them unless there is a medical need for more information (rather than to try to find something wrong). i will do the GBS test because my midwife will just use the wash if i am positive.

post #14 of 14

We do the 12 and 20 week ultrasounds, but only because of a history of birth defects, I do not do any others.  I do the 28 week blood test to check iron levels/full prenatal panel (titers, etc.).  And I'll pee in a cup periodically (but not every visit). 


I do not submit to weigh-ins.  I do not pee in a cup for every visit.  I do not do the quad screenings.  I do not do GTT or GBS testing.  I do not do STD testing (some doctors try to slip this into the prenatal panel), up to and including HIV testing without a reason.  I will monitor my blood sugars at home if I'm having issues, but I didn't even do that this pregnancy.  I refuse use of the doppler (until pushing stage).  I refuse vaginal exams until active labor.  I will not visit a nutritionist unless I'm having some severe dietary issues (m/s, nausea, and minor aversions are not reason enough).  I will not submit to NSTs, BPPs or anything of that sort without some serious risk factors being involved (and being 39 weeks pregnant is not a risk factor). 


At every visit my uterus is measured with a tape measure, palpated with hands, and listened to with a fetascope.  I have my blood pressure taken and I will periodically be asked to pee in a cup.  If I've recently weighed myself she'll write it down, but if I haven't she doesn't care.  That's all I do.  None of those are invasive, none of those are intrusive, and they will reflect what is going on with my body quite well.  If in the course of our discussion of current symptoms a concern or question comes up, it is discussed and evaluated.  At no time is anything dictated to me, nor does anyone try to pressure/scare me into doing what they want. 

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