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Your Pregnancy Month by Month
     

Your Pregnancy Month by Month

1.0 1
by Clark Gillespie, Harpercollinsp Harperperennial Library
 

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Now in its fifth edition—featuring monthly sonogram photographs and the latest information on genetic testing, multiple pregnancies, diet, and exercise

This reliable and reassuring book by Clark Gillespie, M.D., has provided more than 200,000 women with invaluable technical information and expert advice for a confident and comfortable pregnancy. Now

Overview

Now in its fifth edition—featuring monthly sonogram photographs and the latest information on genetic testing, multiple pregnancies, diet, and exercise

This reliable and reassuring book by Clark Gillespie, M.D., has provided more than 200,000 women with invaluable technical information and expert advice for a confident and comfortable pregnancy. Now completely updated and revised, it supplements your obstetrician's guidance by answering numerous common and uncommon questions from "Will sex in the ninth month make my water break?" and "Should I indulge my cravings for french fries?" to "What is an incompetent cervical os?" A world-renowned obstetrician/gynecologist with decades of experience, Dr. Gillespie doesn't shy away from tough subjects and answers questions that you may not even have known to ask. But he is also a compassionate and authoritative presence offering practical support at a time when many women feel especially vulnerable. Gillespie organizes the book by lunar month. Each chapter of Your Pregnancy Month by Month will address a stage of your pregnancy. And at the end of each chapter, space is provided for you to create a personal diary in which you can record thoughts and feelings, keep track of medications, and jot down nonemergency questions you wish to ask your doctor. For example, Your Pregnancy Month by Month will take you step-by-step through:

  • The first lunar month, in which you'll learn all about ultrasound and how to select your doctor
  • The fifth lunar month, in which Dr. Gillespie will discuss immunization, backache and posture, and travel precautions
  • The ninth lunar month, by which time you're ready to prepare for your hospital experience and read about the first moments of bonding with your newborn

Informative and accessible, Your Pregnancy Month by Month guides you through one of the most miraculous and wondrous journeys of your life.

Editorial Reviews

Bruce A. Harris
An elegant book written with concern and compassion, from vast experience by a master obstetrician of great heart.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780060957148
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
09/28/1998
Edition description:
Subsequent
Pages:
336
Product dimensions:
6.12(w) x 9.25(h) x 0.84(d)

Read an Excerpt

Your Pregnancy Month by Month 5e


By Clark Gillespie

HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.

Copyright © 2006 Clark Gillespie
All right reserved.

ISBN: 006095714X

Chapter One

It's a done deal! A baby is on the way.

Although you did not realize it, day 1 (or night 1) -- the first 24 hours of your pregnancy and your baby's existence -- have just gone by. Sometime during those hours, conception occurred.

Your pregnancy began at the time of ovulation, about two weeks after the first day of your preceding menstrual period. Let's see how the whole miracle gets going.

Implantation of a Pregnancy

Each month an egg is released from one ovary or the other by the process of ovulation, and it migrates into one of the two narrow fallopian tubes that lead to the uterus. There, if the egg comes in contact with sperm that have migrated up from the vagina, fertilization occurs. After fertilization, the beginning embryo continues down into the uterus, or womb, where several days later it slips into a lush, sugar-rich bed and there grows for some 265 days. The womb's inviting lining, having received and engulfed the embryo, remains intact in order to nourish it. Thus, menstruation -- the monthly shedding of this lining when it is not needed for a fertilized egg -- does not occur. So the first and most common sign of pregnancy is the absence of menstruation.

Early Pregnancy Impact

The established pregnancy, new and infinitely small though it is, soon leads to awesome changes within you. These changes are instituted by certain cells that constitute part of the new life within you. These cells, called chorionic villi, are responsible, as we shall soon see, for a positive pregnancy test. Chorionic cells stimulate intense activity in the master pituitary gland and it, in turn, sends signals of impending changes to all parts of the body, as a national tracking system might alert everyone that an alien -- but friendly -- spaceship has landed.

One major pituitary signal alerts the corpus luteum cyst on your ovary to keep on going. This cyst forms regularly each month at the point on the ovary where ovulation took place. Usually it survives about two weeks, and its demise signals the onset of menstruation. When you are pregnant, however, your pituitary alerts the corpus luteum to stay on working in the ovary. Thus, in pregnancy this normal cyst lasts for about three months, making large amounts of the hormone progesterone. Progesterone is a fundamental hormone throughout most of your life, but at this time it prevents your uterus from rejecting your infant -- which is akin to a foreign graft on your body. We want to remember that fact because it has some important implications later on. Soon the infant's placenta takes over the progesterone task, and so, by the third month, the corpus luteum withers away.

Although this cyst is a normal and absolutely necessary ovarian substance, it can cause some discomfort for you during its three-month duration -- particularly some pain on the side where it develops. This pain can sometimes be confused with that of an ectopic pregnancy -- a disorder explained later in this chapter.

Signs and Symptoms of Pregnancy

The following symptoms are common signs of pregnancy:

  • Missed period. Many things interfere with normal menses, such as stress, exercise, illness, and so on, but a missed period is commonly the first indication of a pregnancy.
  • Engorged and tender breasts. Breast discomfort at this time is generally greater than is usually felt just before a normal period.
  • Digestive problems. Nausea and even vomiting are not uncommon. A smoke-filled room, which you should avoid anyway, will make you gag. Even foods you usually like may repel your sensitive stomach.
  • Fatigue. You may find yourself becoming exhausted more easily and more frequently.
  • Repeated need to urinate. Because of local congestion, your bladder feels full and you will urinate much more often during the day and, unfortunately, during the night as well.
  • Emotions. You may experience moments of inexplicable depression and irritability.

Pregnancy Testing

From the dawn of time -- or at least since humans became involved in it -- the early determination of the existence of a pregnancy, which has such enormous social, physiological, and emotional impact, has generated fantastic interest. In ancient cultures, all manner of tests were devised to determine pregnancy. The saliva from a pregnant woman would supposedly make a goat throw up. A golden ring suspended over a woman's abdomen would spin wildly if she was pregnant -- in one direction if it was a boy, another if it was a girl. One hundred and fifty years ago, the first urine pregnancy test was devised. After the urine lay flat on a plate for a few hours, it became covered with a misty, iridescent film, which sank to the bottom in five more days!

Modern medicine's romance with pregnancy testing began when it was determined that a substance secreted by the human embryo called human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) begins to circulate in maternal blood very early on. It was also established that HCG was concentrated and excreted in maternal urine. This very specific hormone substance is secreted by embryonic chorionic villi cells almost from the moment of conception, and its secretion increases, doubling just about every other day, reaching a peak at somewhere between days 60 and 80 of pregnancy, falling rapidly thereafter, but continuing to be secreted until delivery and for several weeks following.

Continues...


Excerpted from Your Pregnancy Month by Month 5e by Clark Gillespie Copyright © 2006 by Clark Gillespie. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

What People are Saying About This

Dr. Bruce A. Harris Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology University of Alabama
"An elegant book written with concern and compassion, from vast experience by a master obstetrician of great heart."
David Spangler
"An elegant book written with concern and compassion, from vast experience by a master obstetrician of great heart."Dr. Bruce A. HarrisProfessor of Obstetrics and Gynecology University of Alabama

Meet the Author

Clark Gillespie, M.D., author of Your Pregnancy Month by Month, is certified by the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology and is a clincal professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Arkansas School of Medicine. He lives in Little Rock, Arkansas.

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Your Pregnancy Month by Month 1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
As a birth professional myself, I found this book to be quite fear inducing. Alongside the typical discomforts a pregnant woman can expect, are quite alarming and very rare complications added in as if they were commonplace. Being well informed is one thing, but such a book can produce great anxiety in a woman who should be aware rather than bombarded with unusual circumstances than are quite unlikely.