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Sophia Antipolis - Pregnancy and Childbirth

If you think you may be pregnant, you can buy a pregnancy test at the supermarket or at the pharmacy in order to be sure. The test is very easy to do and you get a result in 5 or 10 minutes. Then, if your test is positive you need to consult a gynecologist or a general practicioner. You can find one at the nearest hospital or clinic or ask your chemist for a private gynecologist. During this consultation, he or she will arrange a blood test for confirmation. To do this, you have to go to a laboratory. The doctor will take different measures (height, weight, blood pressure…) and you can ask him/her any questions. Don’t forget to let him/her know what medicines you take, if you smoke etc.

The next day you will have the results from the laboratory.  If the results are positive you will have several medical tests. This will begin at the end of the third month of your pregnancy. The tests are a blood test, a test for syphilis, rubella, toxoplasmosis and the HIV test. When your pregnancy is confirmed, the doctor will give you a “Future Maman” form, which you need to fill in and send to your social security office. Then you will receive a booklet called “Carnet de Maternité” which contains information about your pregnancy, laws etc. All the costs will be reimbursed by social security.

You will have three scans:
1) After 12 weeks of pregnancy in order to define the date of birth and to see if the embryo is in good health.
2) After 22 weeks in order to determinate the growth of the baby and to check if something is wrong (heart, breathing…)
3) After 32 weeks in order to confirm the position of the baby and to determinate if the delivery can be done naturally or not.

You are offered eight antenatal classes to prepare for the delivery.One piece of advice is to go the independent midwives instead of the classes at the hospital. The independent midwives take better care of you than the hospital.

If you decide to go to a hospital, you must know that a midwife will manage your labour and the delivery. If complications arise, an obstetrician will arrive. However at a private maternity clinic your own obstetrician will be at the delivery, assisted by a midwife.

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