When are pre-pregnancy screening tests required if I am trying to conceive?
I've been taking Diane 35 for 4 years, and now wish to get pregnant. When are pre-pregnancy screening tests required? For example, I am wondering if it is advisable to go for a pre-pregnancy test and check up to make sure that I do not have any issues conceiving due to long term intake of the Pill.
It is getting increasingly more popular for women to undergo some sort of pre-pregnancy tests first before they conceive.
This is to determine if there are any possible issues that need to be addressed first before getting pregnant (eg. rubella vaccination).
The basic tests include:
- a simple urine analysis
- pap smear (to exclude cervical pre-cancer and cancer)
- detailed pelvic ultrasound scan (to exclude fibroid / ovarian cysts that may need to be removed before conceiving) and
- blood tests (to screen for possible anaemia / thalassemia carrier status / hepatitis B status, rubella immunity, exclude syphilis and HIV infections).
- your blood group is also tested for
A physical examination is also performed to determine your height, weight, BMI (body mass index) and blood pressure is measured (to exclude pre-existing high blood pressure).
Being on Diane 35 for 4 years should not delay your overall ability to conceive because once you stop taking oral contraceptive pills, your fertility should return.
The ability to conceive would then be determined by a variety of factors (your age, ability to ovulate, the patency of your Fallopian tubes and your partner's sperm quality).