YOUR BUMP… THE MIDWIVES ABDOMINAL EXAMINATION

Have you wondered what the midwife might be looking for especially when she is examining your bumb? Let me make it simple for you.. I have also been lost once

Abdominal examination is part of the general examination done by the midwife for all expectant mums. This is one of the crucial ones since you are pregnant

She will first ask you to empty your bladder and position you on a comfortable bed or couch. She provides privacy and exposes your abdomen.

⛔Inspection
She inspects your abdomen for the skin color, scars, size, shape and also the strae. All this has its meaning. A previous scar can let her know you had a previous surgery and it will be used in your care

⛔Palpation
You will also notice that she uses her palm to palpate or feel what is in your abdomen. She is trying to find out how your baby is lying and presenting. Meaning is baby coming with head first, buttocks or some other part?

⛔Fundal height measurements
She will also take note of the uppermost part of the womb called the fundus. The midwife will use a tape measure to measure the length of your bump. She has her reference points. This is very crucial because it gives her an estimation of how old or how well your baby is growing. Example if you are 20 weeks your bump should also be + or – 2 (18 to 22) . Any figure within this is considered normal. If your Bump is 20cm and you are already 30 weeks your midwife will raise an alert there could be growth restriction. If you are 20 weeks gestation and bump is already 30cm with a singleton it also raises alarm. There could be a problem. Twin gestations usually have higher fundal heights. Always compare it to the previous reading to know if your bump is growing. Your midwife only starts measuring when your uterus is palpable meaning she can feel it.

⛔Auscultation /Fetal heart
She will also listen to the fetal heart of the baby with the Fetoscope to make sure she hears your babies heartbeat.. You may be lucky to hear as well. This is unlikely if the pregnancy is in the early stage.

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In all she does
1.Inspection

  1. Palpation
    3.Fundal height measurement
  2. Auscultation /listen to the fetal heart

She may not be able to figure out everything, give her every information example previous surgeries, medical conditions like ulcer etc..

It will be done at each visit. Ask questions to know how your pregnancy is doing.

#Thanks

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