Recommended tests in early pregnancy


There are a number of recommended tests we request, with your permission, the first time you have blood tests in pregnancy.  

All women are advised to have the following tests:

  • full blood count

  • blood group and antibodies

  • hepatitis B and C

  • HIV

  • syphilis

  • rubella

  • urine m/c/s

The full blood count is done to check for anaemia, abnormalities in the white cells or platelets and clues for conditions such as iron or B12 deficiency, sickle cell disease or thalassaemia. We need to know your blood group and antibody results, especially if your blood group is Rhesus negative. We test for infections such as hepatitis B and C, HIV and syphilis, as these conditions carry a significant risk of harm to yourself and to baby. A check is done to see if you are still protected from rubella, which most women would have been immunised for as a child. A urine test for infections and pre-existing kidney disease rounds out the routine tests.  

Depending upon the individual risks, we may also wish to test for chlamydia, liver and kidney disease, diabetes, chicken pox, iron, B12, vitamin D and thyroid disease.  

Your Pap Smear or Cervical Screening Test should also be up to date.

Ultrasound scans

There are a couple of recommended scans and a number of additional scans that may be suggested, depending upon your particular situation.  

All women are advised to have the following scans:

  • A Nuchal Translucency or First Trimester Anatomy Scan (between 11 and 13 weeks of pregnancy) Information about your choices for prenatal testing, including NIPT tests, is available here as well as a decision support tool here

  • A Morphology scan (between 18-22 weeks)

Depending upon your individual circumstance, you may be advised to have the following scans:

  • A dating scan (usually ordered early, ideally between 7 and 8 weeks of pregnancy, if you are not sure when you fell pregnant)

  • A viability scan (for reasons such as bleeding or reduced movements)

  • A growth scan (if there are concerns that baby is bigger or smaller than expected)

  • A late scan for placental position (if you have a low lying placenta noticed during the morphology scan, a repeat scan will be recommended by 36 weeks)

  • There are lots of specialised scans that may be recommended which we use to monitor baby’s health and wellbeing (if concerns are raised based on history, other scans, tests or growth)