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Why you should know your pregnancy terminologies

By - Heavy Mama | May 25th 2013 at 00:00:00 GMT +0300

By Heavy Mama

If you are expectant and have visited the antenatal care clinic, I am sure you have heard the medics using some terminologies that sometimes sound foreign.

I recall when I was carrying my first pregnancy and visited the clinic for the first time; one of the questions the midwife asked me caught me off guard: “Are you a primipara?”

“Pri what?” I shot back.

I had no idea the nurse wanted to know if this was my first pregnancy.

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If you are heavy with child, I am sure you have heard either your gynaecologist or midwife mention these terminologies or they have been jotted down in your medical profile. It would be useful to know some of these common pregnancy terminologies:

Primipara: It is, sometimes, shortened as ‘prim’ or a ‘primip’. This is a woman giving birth for the first time.

Epidural: This is a type of local anaesthesia used to relieve pain during delivery. It is common in the West and local private hospitals.

Episiotomy: It is an incision made in the tissue around the vagina during delivery to ease the process of baby coming out.

Doppler: This is the machine the midwife uses to detect the foetal heartbeat.

Colostrum: This is the yellowish milk secreted shortly before and for a few days after childbirth.

Lochia: Just after birth, there is some discharge — blood, mucus, and other fluids that a woman produces from the vagina for a few weeks.

Braxton hicks contractions: This is basically false labour that commonly happens to first time mothers because they have no idea what to expect. 

Expected Date of Delivery. It is commonly abbreviated in your clinic card as (EDD). This is the day you expect to have your baby.

Foetal heart abbreviated as (FH). It means the foetal heart. If it is present, the midwife will write ‘FH heard’ or ‘FHH’ in your card.

Quickening: These are the first movements of the baby you can feel. Some women say it feels like popcorn popping in the tummy and it is felt from 16 weeks.

Next time you go to the clinic and hear these terminologies, you will be in the know, and in a better position to ask informed questions.


Episiotomy pregnancy anaesthesia clinic
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