As one of the most experienced obstetricians and gynecologists in Los Angeles, Dr. Kevin Galstyan is a doctor who is dedicated to delivering up-to-date obstetric care for both uncomplicated and complicated pregnancies.
Prenatal Care by Obstetricians
Having a baby is one of the most amazing experiences of your lifetime warranting an attentive and well-trained physician. When you choose Dr. Kevin Galstyan you can look forward to specialized and individualized care provided throughout your pregnancy. Working alongside leading maternal-fetal (high-risk) doctors and utilizing state-of-the-art technologies such as ultrasound, you will experience the pregnancy and birthing process of your expectations, whether it be a vaginal delivery or cesarean section.
Regular Outpatient Office Visits
An obstetrician takes care of all your medical and obstetrical needs week by week. From the initial ultrasound, routine and specialized blood tests, measuring fetal growth, listening to the baby’s heart rate at each visit, monitoring blood pressure, and deciding on your birthing plan, Dr. Galstyan will guide you throughout your journey. His goal is to provide you educational materials about the pregnancy process, ensuring that all of your questions are thoughtfully answered at each visit.
Blood Work and other Lab Tests
In the first trimester, you will undergo a pelvic exam with testing for sexually transmitted diseases if you are at risk or potentially exposed. Sometimes blood work is done in the first trimester to measure your pregnancy hormone (HCG) if there is a question of the status of the pregnancy. Not all early pregnancies make it to the second trimester. While unfortunate and more common than expected, miscarriages are a fact of life. We will support you through this painful process and guide you to your options. Miscarriages do not mean that you or your spouse has a problem or that you will not conceive again in a short time; it’s usually due to a failure of the embryo to develop normally and is Mother Nature’s way of protecting you.
Urine is collected and screened for infections during your first visit and then again at each visit, the urine will be tested to make sure one does not develop. Blood work is then repeated early in the second trimester to look for possible problems and to check your blood type. A screen for diabetes is usually done between 25-29 weeks of pregnancy which entails drinking a sugary liquid and having blood work done at set intervals.
During your pregnancy you will have a minimum of two ultrasound scans, the first being a dating scan so that you know your baby’s due date and the second one is an anatomy and growth scan. If there are any concerns about your baby’s growth, additional scans may be recommended. Diagnostic ultrasound scans are deemed very safe. You will receive pictures of your developing baby during each ultrasound, possibly even learning the baby’s gender if desired.
High-Risk Pregnancy Management
High-risk pregnancy management is required if there are any concerns about the health and well-being of you or your baby. Women under the age of 17 or over the age of 35 are considered high-risk as are those who suffer from medical conditions such as diabetes or high blood pressure or are very overweight. For expert advice on managing your high-risk pregnancy, Dr. Galstyan will monitor with specialist (perinatologist) if necessary .Teamwork is at the core of his philosophy, both with you as his patient and other professionals.
You and Dr. Galstyan can work on developing a birthing plan if that is your choice. It is not a requirement and flexibility is encouraged because unexpected events may occur without warning. Pain management options during the labor and delivery process include epidurals, IV medications, or none at all. Doulas, or birthing support people can be part of your delivery process.
You will be supported through each stage of childbirth, including a natural delivery of the placenta. If there are any complications during your vaginal delivery, the doctors and nurses will keep you informed. Every option will be offered for you and your partner to participate in the decision-making process. While complications are rare, we are prepared for handling all of them, anticipated or not. After the delivery, you will stay in the hospital for 1-2 days. Any stitches placed after the birth will dissolve naturally over the next few weeks.
A cesarean section (c-section) is an operation where an obstetrician performs surgery to deliver your baby through a cut in your lower abdomen and uterus. Many women elect to have a c-section at the beginning of their pregnancy while others start out with the goal of a vaginal birth, only to find that the baby may not fit through the birth canal. Each decision is individualized for your particular circumstance. Dr. Galstyan is highly trained and experienced in completing safe c-sections whether planned or emergent. After all, approximately 30% of deliveries in the United States happen this way. Cesarean sections take a bit more time to recover and your hospital stay may last 3 to 5 days. Staples used to close your incision will be removed before you go home or if sutures were used, they will dissolve over time. All you have to do is keep the incision clean and dry.
It‘s not unusual to have moderate bleeding for a few days after the delivery—vaginal or by cesarean. It tapers over the next few weeks and is generally replaced with a pink tinged discharge by 4-6 weeks. Any large clots (bigger than a plum) that persist beyond an hour must be reported and a visit to the hospital may be necessary.
Breastfeeding/Lactation can start immediately with the delivery of the baby but larger volumes of milk make take a day or two to develop. The postpartum blues can last for a week or two but any severe or lasting symptoms of depressed or anxious mood beyond two weeks should be discussed with your doctor. There is help for you and Dr. Galstyan is an expert dealing with all postpartum issues.
Contraception will be offered in the immediate postpartum period and care will be given in discussing all of your options and addressing any concerns.