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What is an obstetrician?

An obstetrician, also known as an OB-GYN, is a medical professional who focuses on practicing medicine that relates to pregnancy and childbirth. They can further choose to focus on branches within obstetrics, like choosing to concentrate on maternal-fetal medicine and helping women who are experiencing high-risk pregnancies.

The first time a woman will normally see an obstetrician is when they make their first appointment for prenatal care. They will continue to make regular appointments with their obstetrician throughout the rest of their pregnancy.

An obstetrician will check on both the mother’s and the unborn baby’s health by performing routine tests, including but not limited to ultrasounds and tests that check for diabetes and genetic disorders. They will offer pregnant women advice on important topics like what to eat and how often they should exercise. They can help them learn how to deal with any morning sickness as well as any overall discomfort or pain they are experiencing during their pregnancy.

What Do Obstetricians Treat?

Obstetricians are able to treat a wide variety of health issues that a woman may experience during her pregnancy, including high-risk and therefore major health issues. While any pregnant woman can choose any obstetrician to deliver their baby, it is advised for women over the age of 35 or women who have been diagnosed with a high-risk pregnancy to get their prenatal care from an experienced obstetrician as well.

A list of some of the major things an obstetrician treats in their patients:

Ectopic pregnancy

Ectopic pregnancy means that the fertilized egg did not attach to the uterus as it should and therefore requires the use of medicine or surgery in order to end the pregnancy. Signs associated with an ectopic pregnancy include abnormal vaginal bleeding, mild pain or cramping on one side of the abdominal or pelvic area and low back pain.


This medical condition is one that develops during pregnancy. While the exact cause is not known, symptoms associated with preeclampsia include high blood pressure, which can be detrimental to both mother and baby. It also leads to an increase in protein in their urine, which often causes their hands, feet and legs to swell. Treatment options include taking prescribed medications and getting plenty of rest.

Placental abruption

This condition is caused when the placenta detaches from the uterus, which not only causes unwanted bleeding it can also get in the way of the unborn baby receiving necessary nutrients from the mother. There is no treatment available for this serious pregnancy issue, making it necessary for an obstetrician to closely monitor a woman who has been diagnosed with placental abruption. An abruption can lead to obstetrical hemorrhage, which means that the uterus does not contract after delivery and can therefore lead to an excess of postpartum bleeding.