Post # 1
Going off of my last period I’m about 5weeks 6 days pregnant. This was an unplanned pregnancy and I don’t have an established Ob gyn yet. I scheduled an appointment with a doctor who is in network and has privileges at the hospital I’d like to deliver at, but my first visit isn’t until 1/12. I’ve been having some brownish spotting for the past few days, which I know many women experience, but it’s still a bit unnerving. I called my new OB yesterday and they basically said that the doctor is in surgery and since I’m not technically a patient of the practice yet they can’t give me any medical advice other than if I’m concerned or in pain to go to the ER. I get it, liability and all, but after I got off the phone I was a little frustrated they didn’t suggest moving my appointment up to next week or coming in for blood work. This is my first pregnancy so I don’t really know what to expect, and maybe I’m just being difficult or expecting too much. I am going to contact another doctor on Tuesday (yay for a stressful holiday weekend) but wanted to know if anyone has any advice in choosing an OB. Thanks for the help!
Post # 2
I chose an OB who worked at the Women’s Clinic at the hospital I wanted to deliver at. If I had questions prior to my first visit (about 9 weeks), I just checked with my normal doctor. Do you have a primary care provider?
Post # 3
I looked at hosptials first – then found an OB who delivered at the one(s) I liked based on ratings, reviews, etc. Also, cross check with your insurance as well to make sure the hospitals/OB’s are in your network.
It is stressful to wait. I was 4w when I found out I was pregnant, but had to wait till I was roughly 8w along before they would see me. Often they make you wait because their isn’t much to see on the u/s until week 7 and it can cause unneccessary worry, etc. HB doesn’t even start till around week 6. You could make an appt. with your primary care provider.
Post # 4
Most OBs don’t see patients until around 8 weeks because there’s not much to be done before then. If the spotting means something bad, then your body will do what it does whether an OB sees you or not. If it’s nothing (which is very likely!) then you don’t need an OB for that either. I saw my regular family doc for the first 8-20 weeks of my pregnancy!
As for picking an OB, I just went with whoever was easiest the first time around (worked in the same office as my family doc). I didn’t really like the care I received from her though, although in the end I had a relatively easy delivery and a healthy baby so I’m not complaining. This time, I chose an OB recommended by a friend, and so far he has been truly fantastic. He was just, like, *meant* to have this job, haha.
Post # 5
Sorry you are stressing out! If you’re not having painful cramps and heavy bleeding (enough to fill a pad) it’s probably not anything to worry about. I didn’t have an appointment until 9 weeks and I am not really surprised your doctor wouldn’t suggest seeing you next week because A. the appointments fill up SO fast, they probably don’t have any availability. When I schedule my appointments 4 weeks in advance, there are barely any days left on the calendar. and B. at 5/6 weeks, unfortunately if something was going wrong there isn’t really anything they could do anyway. Try not to stress until your first appointment – I know how long that wait feels!
Post # 6
I don’t have a PCP either. We just moved from out of state in July and I had just had check ups before we moved.
Thanks for the advice all. It’s somewhat confusing since I see other posts on the bee about everyone’s Hcg levels at 5 and 6 weeks and what not, so I start thinking maybe I’m missing something. Plus, Dr. Google has me all kinds of worried! But I appreciate you all taking the time to respond…Basically I guess I just need to chill!
Post # 7
- Wedding: April 2016 - Ed Oliver Golf Club, Wilmington, DE
mrsatoz : I also did not have a PCP or an OB when I got pregnant in July. I decided which local hospital I wanted to deliver at, then looked up available OBs on my insurance and matched an OB to the hospital. Turns out that I really do love the practice!
They did not see me until 10 weeks. It drove me crazy! I also had slight spotting in the beginning, but they told me unless it became severe or very crampy, it was probably normal. Also, that they don’t do anything that early in pregnancy anyway, other than let nature run its course. I am 28 weeks pregnant today!
Post # 8
Most people who have super early appointments have likely been following with their ob for known issues, and that is a lot of what you see on here! It is totally normal to see the Ob at 8-10 weeks. Avoiding doctor google is the best thing for you. No one posts “I had an easy, normal pregnancy, a delivery with no complications and a healthy baby.” You only get the horror stories. I suggest picking one reputable resource, online or book, and reference it and avoid falling down the rabbit hole of scary posts online! Best of luck!
Post # 9
For what it is worth – my OB never told me my HCG levels. Not once. My baby is now two weeks old.
Post # 10
mrsatoz : I didn’t really choose my OB/GYN, I had a gyno, but she didn’t do OB so she referred me to another OB in her practice, and that OB ended up being the best OB I’ve ever had, even a friend chose to use her as well for a regular gyno. I don’t know my HCG levels, but I was told they were good as well as my progesterone. But I didn’t hear any numbers on those. I wouldn’t worry too much. In my first my OB/GYN saw me the moment I was pregnant. For my second pregnancy she didn’t see me until I was 8 weeks (ended up miscarrying) and now for this one same thing.
Post # 11
hannahshope : I’ve posted about my normal, boring pregnancy on the Bee before 🙂
mrsatoz : My first pregnancy, I saw a midwife at 11.5 weeks. Didn’t have a blood hCG done until then, and I wasn’t told the number (I suppose I could’ve asked but all I needed to know what that it was normal). Second pregnancy, first appointment at 8.5 weeks, same deal with the hCG. Light spotting in early pregnancy is normal! Congrats!
Post # 12
mrsatoz : I’m in the process of finding an OB/GYN as well, and it’s super stressful and overwhelming. Right now, I want to stay in my medical group so I’m trying to pick based on location (halfway between work and home preferrable, as they are 40 miles apart) with some decent reviews.
As for many people here knowing their beta levels at 5-6 weeks, keep in mind there’s a fairly decent sized population of women here who have been struggling with infertility and have been seeing a specialist, so they’ll bring them earlier to check levels.
Post # 13
Do you know what kind of birth you’d like to have? Ideally you want to pick an OB who matches with your philosophy on pregnancy and birth (natural vs medicated birth, minimal monitoring during pregnancy vs undergoing every scan and test available etc) because your care team is going to play a huge part in how your birth turns out!
Post # 14
I had to switch my OB at 34 weeks pregnant and it does feel really frustrating to be in-between doctors! One thing that helped me was to remind myself that if I’m really worried about something that it’s okay to go to an urgent care/ER. Also, my old doctor said that I can always call their office if I need to, so maybe calling your old primary care doctor is an option?
(And what PP said about most doctor’s don’t see pregnancy patients until 8-10 weeks in is totally true and normal from my experience).
Post # 15
Like others said- whether spotting or not, there isn’t anything an OB can do until 7w or so anyway so it isn’t surprisingly that they won’t move the appointment up. We’ve all been in your shoes- it totally sucks, and you just want to hear a heartbeat or see the bean on the ultrasound for peace of mind, but the OB is not going to know much if you go now (i.e. try to do an u/s not see anything, have you come back in a week or two anyway) so you just have to wait. I’m sorry 🙁 It really is a hard time.
All that said, there were two things I took into consideration when selecting my providor- how the appointments went (responsiveness on behalf of admin staff, including claims and billing, bedside manner of doctor/practice, approach of doctor/practice during the appointment- what kind of questions did they ask? How much time did I have with the doctor? Etc) as well as the practice’s outcomes. My original OB was at my gynecologists’s practice- which was fine for getting my regular pap smear, but did not jibe with what I wanted out of an OB. I wanted a holistic approach to pregnancy, minimal intervention, and attempt a natural unmedicated birth if possible. At my very first appiontment, the OB told me straight out because I had surgery a few years ago on one of my hips I would be looking at c-section. I was shocked, especially after talking with my surgeon, who said there is absolutley no reason pregnancy or vaginal delivery would be impacted by my prior surgery. Sigh. Not the approach I wanted from my OB.
Regarding outcomes, my old OB doesn’t publish them. My midwife practices publishes percentages of successful vbacs, percentages of c-sections, episiotomies, etc. They had a meet-and-greet session to introduce their approach, their publications, their research, etc. I really liked the latter approach and it was the other reason I switched.
I’d say go to the appointment to get an ‘introduction’ to their practice (they may have handouts, etc), but continue to do research on other options, reviews online (taken with a grain of salt of course), as well as get a sense of the type of hospital where you want to deliver.
Anyway this is long. Fingers crossed for you and good luck!