Frequently Asked Questions

Why do we get cramps during pregnancy?

Pregnant women frequently get cramps in their lower calf, especially at night during the third trimester of pregnancy.  The absolute reason for this is not really known but three things can be done to try and help the cramps.

  1. increase the calcium in your diet
  2. take Magnesium tablets or Magnesium powder
  3. drink Schweppes tonic water as it appears the quinine in tonic water helps cramps

Is it safe to get vaccinated during pregnancy?

It is advisable that pregnant woman receive the Flu vaccine every pregnancy, this can be given at any gestation.  

It is also recommended the Whooping Cough vaccine (Boostrix) is given to all pregnant women every time they are pregnant, at or after 30 weeks gestation. This is to boost antibodies in the mother’s blood circulation and breast milk to start building protection for her unborn baby until they complete their vaccinations. Babies are at risk of contracting Whooping Cough specifically in the first three months of life.  

All close family who visit your baby frequently would ideally be vaccinated every five years.   

How is pregnancy duration calculated?

Your anticipated date of delivery is calculated from the first day of your last normal period.  The rules obstetricians use depends on you having a 28-day cycle. We add seven days to the first day of your last period and subtract three months.  

For example – if the first day of your last period was the 1st April then you are due on the 8th of January.  

Pregnancy gestation is calculated over a 40 week period. However, you conceive two weeks after the first day of your last period, so you are only actually pregnant for 38 weeks.

How will I know if I have pre-eclampsia?

Pre-eclampsia is a condition of pregnancy associated with high blood pressure, significant swelling and protein in the urine.

The woman may experience unusual upper abdominal pain and headaches. It is also associated with some specific abnormalities in blood tests.  

Most patients will not know they have pre-eclampsia and one of the reasons for regular antenatal visits is to determine which patients are developing it by checking your urine and blood pressure at each visit to detect and institute early treatment.

It can occur at any stage of pregnancy but more commonly in the third trimester.

First-time mothers, older woman & women with multiple pregnancies (i.e. twins) are at a higher risk of pre-eclampsia.

A family history of preeclampsia can also put you at risk.  

What to expect at your initial consultation?

Your first appointment with Lionel is an opportunity for you to get to know Lionel and for him to get to know you. Your GP referral will provide him with general medical information, including your current health and health history.

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