The Early Pregnancy Assessment Unit (EPU) is a specialist centre within the Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology at Singapore General Hospital. It provides diagnosis, treatment and counselling services for women experiencing vaginal bleeding or pain in the first 14 weeks of pregnancy.
Vaginal bleeding and pain in early pregnancy are common and do not always indicate a problem. However, these symptoms can sometimes be warning signs of
The EPU team consists of doctors, nurse counsellors and sonographers. The team will assess your symptoms, perform a physical examination and order any necessary tests. This may include
Internal examination: To evaluate the appearance of your cervix and extent of bleeding
Ultrasound scan: Performed though the abdomen (“trans-abdominal”) or vagina (“trans-vaginal”) to visualise your pregnancy. Transvaginal scans are generally painless but may be mildly uncomfortable for some patients.
Both internal examinations and transvaginal ultrasounds are safe in early pregnancy.
Blood tests: To measure the level of pregnancy hormones.
Most patients with bleeding or pain will have a normal pregnancy. This is known as a threatened miscarriage where symptoms occur but the pregnancy continues.
Sometimes, the bleeding or pain is due to a miscarriage where the pregnancy is no longer developing (please refer to the brochure “Early Pregnancy Loss” for more information). Your doctor will discuss your treatment options in this situation.
Occasionally, an ectopic pregnancy is found where the pregnancy is growing outside the womb. This can bleed internally and be life-threatening if allowed to continue growing. You will need treatment and your doctor will discuss the options with you.
Rarely, the symptoms result from a molar pregnancy. This is an abnormal pregnancy where both the placenta and baby do not develop properly. This usually needs to be removed surgically.
In some instances, the diagnosis may be uncertain. This can happen because of inaccurate menstrual dates or if it is too early to see the pregnancy on ultrasound. You may need a blood test to measure your level of pregnancy hormones and a follow-up appointment for a repeat assessment.
The EPU caters to pregnant patients under 14 weeks with
The EPU is located at the Prenatal Diagnostic Centre, Block 5 Level 2, Singapore General Hospital. There is a comfortable waiting area with access to a private room for consultations and ultrasound scans.
We are open for consultations from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday. Please contact us at (65) 6321 4516 and inform our staff that you would like an “EPU appointment”.
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