Many women who realize they are pregnant may be wondering if they are carrying multiples. There are certain signs you may experience that may indicate that you are expecting more than one baby.
Signs and symptoms of carrying multiples
Ultrasound : An ultrasound is the only sure way to find out if you are carrying multiples.
High HCG levels : HCG is a hormone that is produced during pregnancy. Women who are carrying multiples have elevated levels of this hormone. However, further tests will have to be conducted to confirm this.
Weight gain : There are number of factors that may contribute to excessive weight gain during pregnancy. Some of the factors include bad eating habits and carrying multiples. Women pregnant with multiples gain about 10 pounds more than women carrying a single baby.
Abnormal AFP test results : Alphafetoprotein AFP is also called the maternal serum screening or the triple marker test . it is a screening test done during the second trimester to detect certain birth defects. The test measures the amount of certain proteins secreted by the liver of the fetus. In women carrying multiples, the test gives a high positive result.
Bigger than gestational age : During pregnancy , your healthcare provider will monitor your fundal height which is the distance between the top of the pubic bone to the top of the uterus. This can help indicate the gestational age of the pregnancy. Women carrying multiples usually have a fundal height greater than the gestational age. You should note that other factors may cause this to happen.
Excessive morning sickness : About 50 % of all pregnant women experience morning sickness. Some women carrying multiples report severe morning sickness even though most do not. Carrying multiples does not mean that you automatically experience severe morning sickness.
Doppler heart count :A Doppler system can be used to detect multiples heartbeats. However this may be inaccurate because a single heartbeat can be heard at different areas of the mother’s abdomen.
Extreme fatigue : This is commonly reported by women pregnant with multiples even though other factors like work and stress can contribute to it.
11 Things You Didn’t Know About Twin Pregnancies. WebMD. http://www.webmd.com/baby/features/11-things-you-didnt-know-about-twin-pregnancies. Accessed November 5, 2014
Signs and Symptoms of Multiple Pregnancy. Family Education. http://pregnancy.familyeducation.com/prenatal-health-and-nutrition/expecting-multiples/56992.html. Accessed November 5, 2014