Early Pregnancy Assessment
Early Pregnancy Assessment
The Early Pregnancy Assessment Unit is part of the Gynaecology Assessment Unit, which offers help and support for those experiencing problems in early pregnancy up to 16 weeks.
This is not a walk-in service, instead people can self-refer to the unit by contacting 01924 541135 or through their GP, midwife, hospital doctor, Emergency Department staff if they have:
- vaginal bleeding in early pregnancy
- pain in early pregnancy
- previous ectopic or molar pregnancy with a new pregnancy
- a new pregnancy and under the care of the recurrent miscarriage clinic. You will often be seen at around 6 -7 weeks for a reassurance scan.
Unfortunately you are unable to self-refer to the unit if you are under 6 weeks pregnant. In this case, you will need to contact your GP who can then make a referral where appropriate.
Once you have been referred you will be contacted by a member of staff who will initially offer a triage assessment over the phone (unfortunately, due to the busy nature of the unit, we cannot guarantee what time this will be). If an appointment is necessary, you will be offered a time to attend the unit for an assessment by the nurse or doctor.
Following the scan:
- People who still have an ongoing pregnancy will be discharged back to the care of their midwife.
- People who are diagnosed with a pregnancy loss will be offered treatment or advised depending on the type of pregnancy loss.
- If we have been unable to locate a pregnancy, further tests will be carried out including a blood test to detect a pregnancy hormone, and a follow-up appointment will be arranged.
Types of early pregnancy loss
Miscarriage is the most common type of pregnancy loss. For many people who experience miscarriage it isn’t just a physical loss, but the loss of hopes and dreams for the future.
We appreciate that this is a very difficult and painful time, this leaflet aims to answer some of the many questions you will have about what has happened.
This video animation tells the story of one couple’s experience of miscarriage. It has been created to raise awareness and help others to see that what they are going through is completely normal.
Less-common types of pregnancy loss: Ectopic and molar pregnancies
- Information leaflet about ectopic pregnancy
- Information leaflet about molar pregnancy / Hydatidiform mole
Visit the Miscarriage Association website which has a wide range of information as well as the different ways you can access support.
In some miscarriages the uterus (womb) empties itself completely. But in others an ultrasound scan shows that the baby has died or not developed but has not yet been miscarried.
This leaflet describes the different ways these kinds of miscarriages can be managed and what you might expect for each option.
- Natural management: Many people are able to return home after their scan where their miscarriage will complete naturally.
In some cases additional treatment is needed such as:
- medical management which involves taking medication
- surgical management with either a general or local anaesthetic.
After care support
An early pregnancy loss can be a deeply distressing experience – both physically and emotionally and we want to ensure that you are able to access the support you need during this difficult time. Patients who are experiencing a loss are given contact numbers and information on how to obtain support from the Miscarriage Association.
Once you have been discharged from our care you can still contact us if you have any questions or problems.
Pregnancy after loss
For many people who have experienced pregnancy loss, finding out they are pregnant again can bring with it a mixture of hope and fear, along with a range of other feelings.
You might find it helpful to talk to your GP, midwife or early pregnancy staff if you are feeling anxious.
The miscarriage association have put together a collection of stories about experiences of pregnancy after loss.
Clinical Nurse Specialists for early pregnancy
Carole Johnston / Nicky Hewitt, Clinical Nurse Specialists for early pregnancy.
Carole and Nicky are our specialist nurses with experience in caring for women and partners following an early pregnancy loss. Their role is to support, advise and help you and your partner or family through this difficult time.
They can help you:
- to make sense of the information given to you at the time of your loss
- to make the right treatment choice for you
- with extra support whilst you are at home.
If you’d like to make an appointment to see one of them, you can:
- ask while you’re attending the unit
- call 01924 541123/ 07718 099670, or
- email firstname.lastname@example.org