Obstetric blood test panel – Prenatal care in your first trimester.
A trimester is equal to 3 months. Normal pregnancy is generally for 9 months which is equal to 3 trimesters.
When the baby is conceived, it is the first trimester. It is continued until the 14th week of the pregnancy.
Healthcare providers generally talk about pregnancy in weeks, not in months or trimesters.
The CPT code of obstetric panel test is 80055.

The first prenatal visit:

Schedule first prenatal visit after the pregnancy is revealed. The doctor will:

  • Draw blood
  • Perform a complete pelvic exam
  • Carry out a pap smear and cultures to observe the problems or infections

The doctor will try to listen to a baby’s heartbeat and might not hear it. It can be heard or seen through ultrasound only after 6 to 7 weeks.

The doctor might ask the following questions in your first visit:

  • About the health
  • Health issues 
  • Previous pregnancies
  • About the herbs, vitamins, supplements, and medicines that are being consumed.
  • Whether to exercise or not
  • About smoking or consumption of alcohol
  • About the genetic disorders or health issues that are present in the family

You may have to be vocal about the birthing plan. And other things that you have to talk about are:

  • Lifestyle changes, eating healthy, and exercising with the pregnant woman
  • Common symptoms while being pregnant like heartburn, fatigue, or varicose veins
  • Managing morning sickness
  • Vaginal bleeding during early pregnancy

Prenatal vitamins along with an iron will be given to pregnant women.

Follow-up Prenatal Visits

In the first trimester, every month the pregnant woman has to visit a doctor.

Visits may be quick but they are very important.

When the pregnant woman visits a doctor, the doctor  will do the following:

  • Weight 
  • Blood Pressure
  • Fetal heart sounds
  • Urine sample for testing the level of protein and sugar.

At the end of the week, the doctor will keep you informed about the changes before the next visit. If there are any issues or concerns you can talk to the doctor about them. 

Obstetric panel Lab Tests

The doctor will recommend a series of tests called a prenatal panel by drawing the blood. The following are the series of panel tests:

  • CBC – Complete Blood Picture
  • Blood typing which includes Rh screen
  • Rubella viral antigen screen
  • Hepatitis panel
  • Syphilis test
  • HIV test
  • Cystic fibrosis screen
  • Urine culture and analysis

Obstetric panel test using ultrasound:

  • It is a simple and painless procedure
  • A wand that uses sound waves will be placed on the belly. The sound waves will let the doctor see the baby.
  • The ultrasound test is done to get a rough idea about the due date in the first trimester

Genetic Testing

Genetic problems or birth defects are identified by genetic testing such as spinal column defects, down syndrome, etc. Be sure to ask for the test results. A genetic counselor can understand tests and risk results. There are multiple options for genetic testing. A few tests carry risks to your baby and others do not.

Women may encounter a high risk for these genetic problems:

  • Women who had a fetus with genetic issues in their previous pregnancies
  • Women’s age is 35  or greater than 35
  • If women have a strong history of birth defects inherited from her family

Under one of the tests, the healthcare provider checks the measurement of the baby’s neck using ultrasound called nuchal translucency.

  • A blood test is done
  • The 2 measures will reveal if a baby is at the risk of having down syndrome
  • If a quadruple screen test is done in the second trimester, then both test results are precise. This process is integrated screening.

Other tests named CVS(chorionic villus sampling) can identify genetic disorders and down syndrome within 10 weeks into pregnancy.

Another new test called cell-free DNA testing watches pieces of baby genes in a mother’s blood.  This new test is highly promising and accurate without miscarriage risk.

Other tests are done in the second trimester.

When to Call Your Doctor

Contact the healthcare provider if you have:

  • Bleeding or cramping
  • Increase in Discharge or discharge with odor
  • Pain, fever, or chills while passing urine
  • Any queries or concerns about health or pregnancy

Obstetric panel test cost:

The cost of an obstetric panel test ranges from $48 to $721.

An obstetric panel is nothing but a group of blood tests performed to check the health condition of women during and before pregnancy. The results of the group of tests reveal problems during pregnancy. These tests support and guidance the required treatment for women during pregnancy or after immediate baby birth.


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