OBSTETRICS

Focusing on all aspects of pregnancy care from preconception counseling through childbirth and the postpartum.

BIRTH OPTIONS

NATURAL BIRTH
We offer non-interventional natural vaginal birth in the safety of a hospital setting, encouraging the use of alternative medical treatments and support services such as child birth education, doulas, chiropractors, acupuncturists, and lactation consultants.

VAGINAL BIRTH
We also offer pain management either via intravenous medications or epidural anesthesia with anesthesiologist available 24 hours a day.

VAGINAL BIRTH AFTER C-SECTION (VBAC)
There is the possibility of achieving a vaginal birth after one prior C-section, after discussing the risks associated with VBAC and providing the requirements to achieve this in the appropriate hospital setting.

GENETIC TESTING

Genetic testing helps to identify health problems in the developing fetus.  Some tests are screening tests, meaning they can reveal the possibility of a problem.  Others are diagnostic tests, which determines with certainty whether a problem exists.

Our office provides several screening tests:

  • Blood testing – Sequential testing is used. Penta Screen are 2 blood tests that are gestational age dependent and look at the hormone level to determine if a pregnancy is at risk for genetic disorders.
  • InformaSeqSM Prenatal Test - an advanced, non-invasive, next generation prenatal screening for T21, T18, and T13 chromosomal aneuploidies that can be administered as early as 10 weeks gestation.
  • Panorama™ - a DNA screening test that can tell you important information about your pregnancy. You can find out if your baby is at risk for having Down syndrome or other chromosomal abnormalities. Panorama can also tell you the gender of your baby. Non-invasive and highly accurate, Panorama has the lowest false positive rate of any prenatal screening test for the commonly screened chromosomal abnormalities, trisomies 21, 18 and 13. And, Panorama can be done as early as nine weeks into your pregnancy using a simple blood draw.

Diagnostic tests:

  • Chorionic villus sampling (done at 10-14 weeks):  a piece of placental tissue is removed abdominally or vaginally and the fetal chromosomes are analyzed
  • Amniocentesis (done at 15-20 weeks):  amniotic fluid is removed abdominally and the fetal chromosomes are analyzed

All women can have the first trimester and quad screening test.  The other tests – cell free DNA, CVS, and amniocentesis – are reserved for women over age 35 or those with a history of genetic abnormalities.  Talk to your Dr. Firouzbakht early in the pregnancy about which tests may be right for you.

PRECONCEPTION HEALTH

Preconception health is a woman's health before she becomes pregnant. It means knowing how health conditions and risk factors could affect you or your unborn baby if you become pregnant. For example, some foods, habits, and medicines can harm your baby — even before conception.

Ideally, every woman should see her doctor prior to becoming pregnant.  At this appointment, you can learn about conditions that could affect your baby and how to prepare your body.

Dr. Firouzbakht will review your health history, especially looking for medical conditions such as diabetes or hypertension, which could impact your pregnancy.  Ideally, any medical conditions should be well-controlled prior to conceiving.  You should bring any medications, whether prescribed or over-the-counter, so you can find out if they are safe to continue.  Your family history is also important so your doctor will inquire whether you have any genetic diseases that run in your family.

While you are trying to conceive, you should take at least 400mcg of folic acid every day to decrease the risk of birth defects like spina bifida and cleft lip.  You can continue normal activities like working and exercising during this time.  Once you have missed your period, you should take a pregnancy test and call your doctor when you have good news!

PRENATAL CARE

Prenatal care is the health care you get while you are pregnant, and will help ensure that you and your baby are healthy during your pregnancy. Contact Dr. Firouzbakht as soon as you know you are pregnant so you can initiate your prenatal care during the first trimester.

The goals of prenatal care are:

  • To track proper fetal growth and development
  • To optimize your health through disease detection and prevention
  • To address proper nutrition and supplements to ensure appropriate weight gain
  • To encourage regular physical activity during pregnancy

For an uncomplicated pregnancy, you will see Dr. Firouzbakht on the following schedule:

  • From first trimester to 28 weeks: every 4 weeks
  • From 28 – 36 weeks: every 2 weeks
  • From 36 weeks until delivery: weekly

At each prenatal visit, Dr. Firouzbakht will assess your and your baby's health by:

  • Checking your blood pressure
  • Checking your urine for protein, sugar, white blood count, and nitrates
  • Monitoring your baby's heart rate
  • Measuring your abdomen to make sure the baby is growing appropriately
  • Measuring your weight gain

During the last few months of pregnancy, Dr. Firouzbakht will discuss your plans for your birth and help guide you in discovering what is best for you and your baby.

PRENATAL ULTRASOUNDS

A prenatal ultrasound test uses high-frequency sound waves, inaudible to the human ear, that are transmitted through the abdomen via a device called a transducer to look at the inside of the abdomen. With prenatal ultrasound, the echoes are recorded and transformed into video or photographic images of your baby.

The ultrasound can be used during pregnancy to show images of your baby, amniotic sac, placenta, and ovaries. Major anatomical abnormalities or birth defects are visible on an ultrasound.

Insurance will pay for 3 ultrasounds throughout your pregnancy:

  1. At the beginning of your pregnancy to determine the viability of the pregnancy
  2. At 18-22 weeks of gestation to determine any fetal anatomical (structural) abnormalities
  3. At 35-36 weeks of gestation to determine the presentation of the baby (head up or head down) and the fluid around the baby.

Additional required ultrasounds will be an extra charge.

Most prenatal ultrasound procedures are performed topically, or on the surface of the skin, using a gel as a conductive medium to aid in the image quality. However, a transvaginal ultrasound is an alternative procedure in which a tubular probe is inserted into the vaginal canal. This method of ultrasound produces an image quality that is greatly enhanced, but it is not a common prenatal procedure. However, it may be used early in pregnancy to get a clearer view of the uterus or ovaries if a problem is suspected. It may also be used early in pregnancy to determine how far along you are in your pregnancy (gestational age).