The germinal stage is a critical period. It is said that less than 50% of zygotes survive the first two weeks. About 60% also fail to attach to the uterus. At this point, the mother is often not aware that she is pregnant.
Stage 2: Embryonic Stage
Second in the stages of prenatal development is the embryonic stage, which lasts from the 3rd to the 8th week. Once the zygote implants itself into the uterine lining, we now call it an embryo.
During this stage:
- The placenta, an organ where the embryo/fetus will get their nourishment, forms.
- The basic areas that will become the head, chest, and abdomen forms.
- Some organs form and begin to function.
- The heart beats.
- At this point, too, the neural tube forms. This will become the spinal cord and brain.
- The embryo can move and even respond to touch.
Reports say about 20% of embryos fail at this stage, significantly due to chromosomal abnormalities. And just like in the germinal stage, the mother may not be aware that she is already pregnant.
Because the mother may not be aware that she is pregnant during the germinal and embryonic stage, she might engage in activities that may endanger her and her baby’s health, like substance abuse and cigarette smoking. Hence, it would be helpful to be aware of the early signs of pregnancy.
Stage 3: The Fetal Stage
The fetal period is from the 9th to the 40th week. By the 9th week, too, we no longer call it an embryo but a fetus.
During this stage:
- The fetus has all its body parts, including the sex organs, which means parents can now identify the sex.
- Their fingerprints also become visible.
- Some of the reflexes, like sucking and swallowing, develop.
- The fetus can now respond to sounds.
Generally, the development of the fetus continues and the changes that development brings become more visible.
Share your thoughts
Be the first to let Hello Doctor know your thoughts!
Join Us or Log In to join the discussion