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Height - 4-6 cm, weight - 7-11 g.
From this week on, your unborn child is no longer called an embryo, but a fetus. This means that all the main organs are already embedded in it, then only their growth and development will take place.
The baby is the same size as a small lemon. Over the next three weeks, its growth will double. So far, half of the body is the child's head, because his brain is developing at a fantastic rate. The legs are also noticeably shorter than the handles. But all these imbalances will be smoothed out by the time of birth.
This week the sternum will finally form, the fingers of the hands and feet continue to develop and gradually acquire nails.
The child's eyes receive an iris - that is, the "colored" part of the eyeball. Now the baby already "knows" exactly what color his eyes will be at birth, but, unfortunately, future parents and even doctors are unlikely to be able to see this on an ultrasound.
The placenta builds up the number of blood vessels so that the baby gets as much of the nutrients it needs as possible. Some of the baby's bowel may still fall out into the umbilical cord, but it will be in the correct position over the next few weeks. The intestines are already starting to make contractions, although they still have nothing to digest.
Soon, thanks to these contractions, amniotic fluid and dead cells will begin to be excreted through the intestines. The kidneys also work actively and filter the blood, although the placenta is now involved in maintaining the biochemical balance of the system. The thymus - the central immune organ - actively synthesizes thymocytes, the first lymphatic vessels appear (next to the lungs), primitive hemoglobin appears in the blood.
The central organ of the endocrine system, the pituitary gland, begins to work. This gland, the size of a pea, is located in a special place between the bones of the skull - the so-called Turkish saddle. The pituitary gland produces hormones that affect metabolism, growth, and reproductive function. In addition, the pituitary gland produces thyroid-stimulating hormone, which promotes the development of thyroid tissue.
It is still impossible to see exactly who will be born to you - a boy or a girl. The final formation of the genitals will be completed a little later. But quite often, experienced doctors can correctly determine the future sex of a child according to ultrasound data from 11-12 weeks.
The baby develops a sense of smell, vocal cords form, palms sensitivity and a grasping reflex appear. He has already found himself many interesting things to do. For example, a child can stretch, turn and very quickly change body position, helping himself with his legs.
The kid loves to bend and unbend the back, wave his arms, kick his legs - in general, he already has a full set of qualities that make all mothers in the world feel tenderness. So he can exercise as much as 7 minutes in a row. And the longest rest that he allows himself lasts only 5.5 minutes.
The main thing that you have to do at 11-12 weeks of pregnancy is to undergo regular tests. A clinical blood test and urinalysis are repeated (if your doctor deems it necessary), an ultrasound scan and a double test are added to them. The purpose of the tests is the early detection of fetal pathologies, if any.
A double test is a screening of blood to detect such pathologies as Down syndrome (dementia), Edwards syndrome (mental retardation), Patau syndrome and some others. All of them arise as a result of changes in chromosomes (21, 18 and 13, respectively). Unfortunately, it is impossible to cure chromosomal pathologies, so many women decide to terminate their pregnancy.
You need to know that children with Down syndrome are quite viable, despite their dementia, but their life expectancy is much shorter than that of a healthy person. Children with Edwards and Patau syndrome only in 5% of cases live up to 1 year, and even then they live very shortly.
To identify syndromes, a blood test is taken from a vein for 2 markers: free beta-hCG subunit and PAPP-A protein (plasma protein A). This test, combined with ultrasound, gives an accuracy of 85%.
The results of the analysis are often presented in units of MoM (the ratio of the woman's serum to the average for that week). If everything is normal, then MoM should be close to one. Congenital malformations are indicated by significant deviations from unity in one direction or another.
But it must be remembered that smoking, the patient's body weight (if it deviates significantly from the norm), IVF, race, inaccurate information about the date of the onset of pregnancy and an undetected multiple pregnancy also contributes to a significant discrepancy in indicators.
The blood test is complemented by an ultrasound examination of the neck area of the fetus (otherwise "the width of the cervical transparency" or "cervical fold"). It is measured no earlier than 10-11 weeks. It is optimal to do ultrasound from 11 weeks to 13 weeks and 6 days of pregnancy (the coccygeal-parietal size of the fetus is from 45 to 84 mm).
The purpose of the ultrasound is to measure the accumulation of subcutaneous fluid on the back of the baby's neck. The main marker is the width of the neck transparency. Moreover, if the baby unbends the head, then this value can increase by 0.6 mm, and if it bends, then it can decrease by 0.4 mm.
The threshold is 3 mm. Large numbers raise suspicion of an anomaly, especially if other signs are present:
- the nasal bone is not determined (60-70% Down syndrome);
- violation of blood flow in the Arancian duct (80% Down syndrome);
- megacystitis (an increase in the size of the bladder);
- moderate tachycardia;
- reduction of the upper jaw;
- as well as blood test data.
If all these factors are unfavorable even after the repeated blood test and ultrasound, another test is done, which is currently considered almost outdated - a chorionic villus biopsy. An instrument is inserted through an incision in the mother's abdominal cavity or through the cervix and a tissue sample is taken.
A similar analysis is amniocentesis (puncture of the fetal bladder). There is a risk of miscarriage, but small (1-2%). It is now believed that markers for beta-hCG and PAPP-A provide data as accurate as biopsy and amniocentesis, but the risk of miscarriage is 0%.
There is not a single woman who is not worried about passing such tests. And there is still a triple test at 15-16 weeks and the same excitement. Try not to be nervous, it is contraindicated for you now. Better enjoy the first "face-to-face" acquaintance with the baby.
On the ultrasound screen, you can see your little man in some detail. Distract yourself from unpleasant thoughts - ask the doctor to print the first "photo" of the baby, talk about whether you can see who is there, a boy or a girl. Relax, because the chances of your baby developing chromosomal abnormalities are really small.
In everyday life, you should take care of your hair and nails. It is good if they are somehow miraculously strengthened and begin to grow well. But more often than not, the opposite is true - hair splits and falls out, nails break.
If you think the situation is unsettling, pay attention to your diet and vitamins and talk to your doctor. We recommend eating more dairy and curd products - it is good for the baby and for your beauty.
Similar processes occur with teeth, so be sure to visit your dentist. At the appointment, tell him that you are pregnant, this affects what kind of anesthesia he will use. It is necessary to brush your teeth at least 2 times a day, and preferably more often. Vitamins containing fluoride, phosphorus and calcium, as well as ascorbic acid will help you.
10 weeks - 11 weeks - 12 weeks