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Health Tip: Getting Prenatal Tests

(HealthDay News) -- Prenatal testing and care is a good idea throughout pregnancy to make sure the pregnant woman and the fetus stay healthy.

The U.S. National Institutes of Health says these tests are typically prescribed for pregnant women:

  • Glucose challenge screening. This test is given between 24 and 26 weeks of pregnancy, and determines the woman's risk for gestational diabetes.
  • Group B streptococcus. This test is given between 35 and 37 weeks to see if the woman harbors bacteria that could trigger pneumonia in the fetus. If the woman tests positive, she will be given an antibiotic during labor.
  • Ultrasound. This imaging exam is typically given between 18 and 20 weeks to check for problems with the developing fetus.
  • Urine test. At each prenatal medical visit, the pregnant woman should give a urine sample, which will be tested for signs of diabetes, urinary tract infection and preeclampsia (high blood pressure during pregnancy).
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