Second month of pregnancy
As the fetus’ brain continues its development, some electrical activity begins in the nervous system. Meanwhile, the arms and legs grow longer, and fingers and toes begin their form. Likewise, the eyes, upper lip, nose and ears become visible, while the lungs start to develop. The neck and trunk of the fetus also become more defined.
Third month of pregnancy
During this time, the fingers and toes are distinct and have nails, while the fetus’ face gains more definition. Meanwhile, the fetus can now swallow and its heartbeat becomes detectable with a machine. The kidneys also begin making urine while the bone marrow forms blood cells.
It is also at this time that the doctors can determine the fetus’ sex. In female fetuses, the ovarian follicles begin forming. While in male fetuses, the prostate appears.
High risk pregnancies
These are pre-existing conditions that can lead to complications during the first trimester of pregnancy.
- First pregnancy after 35 years of age – Women who have their first pregnancy after 35 may be at a higher risk of pregnancy complications.
- Pregnancy during adolescence – Pregnancy during one’s teen years may result in gestational hypertension, anemia, and preterm/early labor and delivery.
- High blood pressure – Pregnant women with uncontrolled blood pressure prior to pregnancy are at risk of developing preeclampsia, low fetal birth weight, and maternal kidney damage.
- Obesity and/or diabetes – Pregnant mothers who are diabetic prior to pregnancy have an association with delivering larger babies, which are more difficult to deliver and may develop insulin resistance.
- Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) – Patients with PCOS are at a higher risk of miscarriage, gestational diabetes, and preeclampsia.
- Thyroid Disease – Patients with hypothyroidism may experience fetal development problems.
- Smoking during pregnancy – This increases the risk of birth defects and Sudden Fetal Death Syndrome (SFDS).
- Illicit drug use during pregnancy – Use of drugs such as marijuana while pregnant increases the risk of stillbirths.
- Alcohol use during pregnancy – This places the baby at risk for Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASDs).
TORCH syndrome is a group of infections in newborns that can occur while the baby is still in the mother’s womb. These include infection from Toxoplasmosis, Other Agents, Rubella, Cytomegalovirus, and Herpes Simplex. Newborns who develop an infection from the aforementioned agents are at risk for developing eye abnormalities, jaundice, and hearing impairments.