At week 9 of pregnancy the baby is starting to look like a little human on ultrasound. You can see the head and body as well as the arms and legs. There will be a nice strong heart beat visible as well. The baby is starting to develop fingers and toes although these will not be visible on the ultrasound yet. The baby is about 1 inch long and all the systems are developing.
The HCG hormone levels are starting to peak which means the early pregnancy symptoms are as well. Nausea and vomiting can be significant during week 9. If your doctor wrote you a prescription for the nausea and vomiting don’t be afraid to use it, they can help greatly. Feel safe that your doctor would not give you a prescription for anything that would hurt the baby.
You have probably had your first doctor’s visit by now as well as your prenatal labs. If there is something that needs to be dealt with right away the doctor’s office will call you, no news is good news. The prenatal panel consists of several blood tests and cultures. You will be tested for anemia, blood type and Rh, several types of infections, and to see that the rubella vaccine is still working. It is not unusual to find bacteria in the urine. This is generally not treated in the non-pregnant patient unless it is symptomatic. Pregnant women with asymptomatic bacteriuria (bacteria in the urine) have a 25% chance of developing a kidney infection during the pregnancy if left untreated. For this reason we usually treat pregnant women with bacteria even if it is not a true bladder infection. Don’t be surprised or worried if your doctor’s office calls in a prescription for an antibiotic for you to take for this reason.
Fetal heart tones are not usually heard in the office until 10-12 weeks. In thin women whose baby happens to be high in the uterus, fetal heart tones may be just audible at week 9. If the doctor tries to hear the heart tones and is unable, don’t be worried, this is perfectly normal. The baby is still deep in the pelvis and the bony structures of the pelvis keep the doptone (the instrument used to hear heart tones) from getting close enough to hear the baby’s heart.