Pre-Conception Screening

Pregnant woman

What is Pre-Conception Screening?

Preconception screening, also interchangeably referred to as pre-pregnancy planning in Singapore, is a service aimed at carefully assessing the health condition of prospective mothers. Preconception screening is not a fertility treatment but rather a screening to identify any risks or issues that may impact pregnancy outcomes.

Women in Singapore typically plan for pregnancy between the ages of 30-40 with more women attempting to conceive past 40 years of age. Attempts to conceive beyond the age of 35 (advanced maternal age) tend to be statistically affiliated with more pregnancy risks. A preconception screening  provides you with the best chance of a successful pregnancy by:

  • Setting appropriate risk prevention strategies
  • Curating dietary and supplement plans
  • Planning appropriate behaviour changes
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How does Pre-Conception Screening work?

There are a few stages to preconception screening, each with different objectives and expected outcomes.

  • Consultation: your medical history and pregnancy goals will be reviewed in this stage. This would involve an assessment of previous health conditions and lifestyle and dietary behaviours which may have an impact on your pregnancy. It is important that prospective mothers provide transparent communication, especially involving substance use such as former or current recreational drugs and alcohol and cigarette consumption. Additionally, your mental health, vaccination status, and physical activities will also be reviewed.
  • Gynaecological examination: a physical examination will be conducted to check for abnormalities pointing to underlying health conditions. This may include identifying lumps or masses on the breasts and pelvic region or any genital abnormalities that may pose risks during pregnancy.
  • Blood tests: a few blood tests will be ordered to evaluate your baseline health condition. Important markers involve assessing blood counts, hormone levels, and antibody levels. Additionally, you will be screened for conditions such as diabetes and sexually transmitted diseases such as hepatitis B, to identify threats to pregnancy. Risks for genetic and hereditary conditions can also be identified with blood tests.
  • Imaging tests: a pelvic ultrasound will be administered to obtain a clearer depiction of female reproductive health. If any concerns have been raised in previous screening stages, an MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) would be requested.

Upon completion of the assessment, a detailed medical report along with a preconception plan will be provided.

Benefits of Pre-Conception Screening in Singapore

Preconception screening is advantageous to prospective mothers as it:

  • Reduces pregnancy risks
  • Reduces risk of miscarriages
  • Reduces risk of infant mortality
  • Increases preparation for potential risks
  • Provides an opportunity to make informed choices
  • Provides systematic steps to obtain the best pregnancy outcomes

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What conditions can Pre-Conception Screening prevent?

Preconception screening is particularly beneficial in treating:

  • Diabetes: to avoid risks of gestational diabetes.
  • Hypertension: to prevent risks of pre-eclampsia.
  • Low antibody: by administering vaccines for conditions that you are not protected against.
  • Obesity: execute weight loss strategies to reduce pregnancy risks.
  • Congenital conditions: identifying conditions that may cause birth defects and practising corrective measures.
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What can I expect from Pre-Conception Screening in Singapore?

Preconception screening provides prospective mothers with a sense of preparedness. The ability to take proactive measures if risks are identified is an empowering opportunity for many women. Additionally, one may also avoid negative outcomes and subsequent psychological distress by making informed choices and decisions based on your current health condition.

The choice of conceiving a child is momentous for many women. A preconception screening can be simply deduced as a protective and safety measure for your pregnancy journey.

How many sessions are required?

For healthy women with no signs of risks, a one-off preconception screening session is sufficient. However, if risk factors are identified, you will be advised to execute dietary and lifestyle changes or consume medications (diabetic or hypertension medications) for a set period of time.

You will then be advised to return to the clinic to assess changes in your condition and fitness to conceive. A preconception screening is often a collaborative work between you and your gynaecologist with a shared objective of an eventual successful pregnancy.

Frequently asked questions

What is the difference between pre-conception screening and fertility assessment?

A fertility assessment measures the fertility level of a woman and her chances of pregnancy. A preconception assessment is a baseline health check to assess the physical fitness and health conditions of women before pregnancy. Certain tests may overlap in these services.

Can I continue attempts to conceive even if pre-conception screening results are not positive?

The choice of conception is completely up to the patient. If you are not able to attain optimum health conditions, you may be required to undergo close monitoring during pregnancy. Certain medications may also be prescribed for the best pregnancy outcome. If any risks are present, you will be able to make informed decisions.

Consultation Hours

Monday to Friday 9 am to 5 pm
Saturday 9 am to 1 pm | Sunday & Public Holidays Closed

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