When to Schedule a Prenatal Visit After a Miscarriage

If you've had a miscarriage, you may be anxious about a new pregnancy

Pregnant woman having an ultrasound
Lumi Images/Romulic-Stojcic/Getty Images

If you've miscarried before and are pregnant again, you may be wondering if you need to see a doctor right away or if you can wait a few more weeks?

In most cases, it's best to seek prenatal care as soon as you find out you're pregnant. However, this applies to all pregnant women, not just those who have experienced a miscarriage.

Pregnancy After a Miscarriage

Seeing your physician as soon as you're pregnant lets your doctor establish an accurate due date and keep tabs on your pregnancy.

Research shows that due dates established by ultrasound are more reliable in the first trimester than later in the pregnancy.

If you have a history of miscarriage, your doctor may want to monitor your hCG levels or perform an early ultrasound. If you're feeling anxious, that monitoring might help you feel more reassured, too. You should see your doctor as soon as possible if your last pregnancy was ectopic or your doctor told you to come in right away for some other reason.

Unfortunately, miscarriages are common, but just because you had one miscarriage does not mean you will miscarry again. If you have had multiple miscarriages, you should see a fertility specialist for further testing.

If you're not feeling especially anxious, you don't have an established relationship with a care practitioner, or there's some other reason why you don't want to go in right away, it's usually not urgent to go on the same day or week you find out you're pregnant.

In the absence of bleeding or other miscarriage symptoms, it is most likely OK to wait a few weeks to begin prenatal care. Don't wait too long, though. It's important for your doctor to establish an accurate due date as early as possible. You should probably go in for your first checkup by the time you are seven or eight weeks pregnant.

Your doctor will probably want to see you about once a month thereafter until you are in the third trimester.

The First Prenatal Visit

The more prepared you are for your first appointment, the smoother it will go. If you're feeling anxious, you might forget the information your doctor needs. Take time before your visit to prepare yourself and gather your medical history. During your first prenatal visit, your doctor will likely ask you the following:

  • Date of your last menstrual period
  • Health problems and sexually transmitted infections
  • Past pregnancies and miscarriages
  • Past hospital stays
  • Medicines you’re taking 
  • Any allergies you may have to foods or medications
  • Your lifestyle
  • Exercise
  • Stress
  • The safety of your environment
  • Your family's health history
  • Your partner's family health history

In addition to the tests mentioned above, at the first prenatal appointment, your doctor will probably check your weight, blood pressure, urine, blood and do a physical and pelvic exam, including a Pap smear. You'll probably also be given a prenatal vitamin with folic acid (600 micrograms) at this visit.

Continue Reading