In the first part of this video, Lesley Regan reviews some general Pregnancy questions and answers.
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Emma Howard: Now it’s that time again when we ask many of our doctors to join us on the Baby Channel sofa to answer all your questions that we’ve gratefully been receiving. With me today is Lesley Regan a Consultant Gynecologist and Obstetrician from St. Mary’s Hospital in London. Thanks for coming in today. Lesley Regan: Thank you. Emma Howard: We’ve had lots of questions. One that I’d like to start with is common. Lots of people who are thinking about having a baby and the planning they can go into it. Sometimes people don’t have the time, but if they do, they think about inoculations and are they up-to-date and particularly rubella. Women are often told you need to make sure that you have an inoculation for this. This woman who has written into says my husband and I would like to try for a baby, but when I was younger I didn’t have my rubella injection. Do I still need to have it or doesn’t it matter? Lesley Regan: Oh! Yes, it matters a lot. Now rubella is the technical term for German measles and the problem here is it if you develop or contract German measles infection for the first time when you’re pregnant, then the baby can be very badly affected by the German measles virus. And in fact, if it’s early in pregnancy, it can lead to deafness, blindness, heart defects, and mental retardation. Emma Howard: So when you say the first time, does it mean that if you had rubella in the past and you have it again in pregnancy? Lesley Regan: Exactly. So the moment that you’ve had the infection you develop an immunity to it and this is why we vaccinate women. So we give them the rubella vaccine or the shot and their immune system then immediately develops the antibodies which then protects their baby in the future and of course protects them from getting the infection again. Emma Howard: And it can occur quite long time, can't it? Because I remember in my case I was tested a simple prick on the finger and from that they could tell that my inoculation was still -- Lesley Regan: Well, it can often be life long or if you like, reproductive years long and we’ve got a very successful vaccination program in the UK. It started off by vaccinating all teenage girls in school so that they’ll be protected when they became pregnant. Emma Howard: It must be when I had it. It was a long time ago. Lesley Regan: Now in fact there are all sorts of things that they do much earlier in kindergarten etcetera, but it’s very important and also important to let this lady know that sometimes we get patients who come along to antenatal clinic and they haven’t been vaccinated against rubella and the reason was because they were worried just in case they fell pregnant. Well, if you read the box of instructions on the rubella vaccine, it says it will avoid pregnancy for three months after you’ve had the vaccine. But what I can reassuringly let everybody know is that there are now a long, long register of patients who have conceived almost immediately after the vaccination. So the vaccination must have been around when the embryo is developing and there have been no abnormalities. Emma Howard: I’ve been really assured. Lesley Regan: So if in doubt, always have the shot and don’t not have it, because you think you might get pregnant, because the baby is not going to be harmed by the vaccination, but if you’ve got rubella, German measles, there could be a very, very, very sad time ahead of you. Emma Howard: Right! So that’s a very clear message there taking option of having it to rather than avoiding it. Lesley Regan: Always. Emma Howard: Second time mums, I’ve had many of them say what the next question everyone wants to know is. She wants to know is. She says, I’ve just find out that I’m 6 weeks pregnant with my second child. But already I have leaky breasts and look at least 4 months. Is it possible to be like this so early? Lesley Regan: Well, it is and part of this is going to have perception of how she looks as well. But some women do have very, very acu