Obstetrics is a branch of medicine concerned with the treatment of women during pregnancy, labor, childbirth, and after childbirth. Obstetricians work to ensure that pregnancy culminates in the delivery of a healthy baby, without impairing the health of the mother. The mother's medical history and health status are initially evaluated.  Her antenatal appointment varies according to conditions found during a physical examination.

During pregnancy:

• a woman goes through a lot of  physiological stages

• a woman can feel nauseous and “throw up”  (morning sickness) which should stop after  3 -4  months

• the plasma volume goes up by a half and the red blood cell volume increases only around 25%

• a woman needs more calories in the form of protein.

• both protein and carbohydrate metabolism changes

• a woman should take supplements of vitamins for more nutritional needs.

• the kidney and ureter is enlarged.

• pulmonary activity changes including increased tidal volume, smaller total lung capacity due to raising of diaphragm due t0 compression of the uterus.

• decreased expiratory reserve volume,

Other contraindications:

• Lower back aching due to centre of gravity movement

• Edema, or swollen feet, common during pregnancy

• In last stage of pregnancy how fetus is positioned to come out is determined: Head first is the norm but may present feet-first,  buttocks-first, side-on, or at an angle.

Some complications include:

Induction – artificially or prematurely stimulating labor in a woman. If a woman does not eventually begin labour by 41-42 weeks, induction may be used, as the placenta starts to become unstable after this date.

Labour – during labour itself, the obstetrician may

• monitor progress of labor

• accelerate progress of labor

• provide pain relief

• surgically assist labor, by forceps, etc.

• Caesarean section, if vaginal delivery is decided against

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