By the end of third month the baby will weigh almost an ounce and grow up to three inches long. The closed eyelids and ears have developed fully. His head now measures one third of his total length.
The placenta is now fully formed and the fetus is getting all the nutrients though this. The placenta is an organ that the mother and fetus share. The umbilical cord anchors the fetus to the placenta. The placenta provides oxygen, nutrients and transports waste materials away.
The baby’s tongue, salivary glands and taste buds are also formed.It indicates that the fetus is already getting a taste of whatever the mother has been eating from the placenta or blood supply from the mother. A network of blood vessels is visible through the transparent skin of the baby. The heart is pumping about twenty five quarts of blood every day.
A coat of fine downy hair called “lanugos” is also developing. The external reproductive organs have differentiated fully. So the baby’s gender is clear. But it needs technical skill of an ultrasound operator to reveal the gender of a baby after baby gender tests
Note – About twenty percent of pregnancies will result in miscarriages in the first trimester.The risk of miscarriage will drop by three percent around twelfth week when your baby’s heart beat can be heard.
This month’s appointment at the doctors is a special one. Make sure that your partner accompanies you. The sights and sound of your unborn child can be enjoyed by you.
Tests To Be Done When 11-15 Weeks Pregnant
You may have to go in for an ultrasound examination this month and you may see your baby. Your health provider will estimate the size of your baby. He will take tape measure to your belly and count the centimeters from the pubic bone to the top of the uterus (fundus). This measurement is taken every month and helps the practitioner assess the baby’s ongoing growth. Some practitioners will however not take the fundal height till twelve or even twenty weeks.
You may be advised to go in for an alpha fetoprotein (AFP) test this month. It helps detect neural tube defects and/or chromosomal abnormalities in the fetus. This AFP test is usually carried out between sixteen to eighteen weeks. This test is optional one. You are informed about the test well in advance, so that you have enough time to decide whether you want to take the test.
At twenty weeks the length of the baby should be about three centimeters. However due to gestational diabetes and extra uterine growth retardation there may be variations in the fundal height. Fundal height is used as a screening tool only. The measurements may not be accurate in females carrying multiple pregnancies, overweight women or when the fetus is in the breech position.
Baby’s Heart Beat Using A Doppler
Hearing the baby’s heartbeat for the first time is an emotional and thrilling moment. Your health provider will check the fetal heartbeat using a small ultrasound device called Doppler or Doptone. If you have a tilted or retroverted uterus then the Doppler may not detect the heartbeat. Don’t be disappointed. You will probably hear it at your next prenatal appointment.