Mentioned in an early blog post that one of the most important steps of getting pregnant no matter where you are is finding an ob/gyn to take on your pregnancy. It is so important to have someone that monitors you over the long haul so that they can pinpoint any drastic changes or possible problems in your pregnancy. The problem with being in Saudi Arabia is that even thou the birth rate in the country is very high, the likelihood of finding an ob/gyn is not so high. Many expats are accustomed to their family doctor simply referring them to an ob/gyn with not much hassle. However, here in Saudi Arabia you have to find your own.
There are so many factors that have to be considered when deciding on an ob/gyn here in Saudi Arabia. Things like, Does the doctor have to be female? Where were they educated? What is their nationality ? Are there language barriers? What is there reputation like? How long have they been practicing in Saudi Arabia? Are they capable of taking on high-risk pregnancy cases? ……
To be completely honest with you the main reason why I have spent most of pregnancy and soon to be delivery outside of Saudi Arabia is because of this main reason. After trying out a few ob/gyns and facing a few complications we decided that coming home would be the safest bet.
A few things to keep in mind and be aware of:
- Many of the ob/gyn we visited were quick to prescribe medication. Any problem or concern you had was scribbled down and passed back with medication. Within a few visits I was prescribed 5 different meds. Reluctant to take any of them, I decided against the so called professionals and chose not to take any.
- Questions unanswered, with both me and my partner soon to become first-time parents we were/are completely clueless to everything pregnancy -related. This only got worse when visiting the doctor that couldn’t bother to clarify or answer any of our burning questions. Thank god for Google is all I can say, it literally kept our sanity in the first trimester.
- You don’t need an ultrasound every time you go to the doctors. Depending on what school of thought you are from some professionals warn against several ultrasounds at risks associated to the fetus. I am unsure of the safety problems, but I will assure you that they will perform them. I had more ultrasounds done in my first trimester then the other two combined.
These were the big things that really stuck out to me. Not to say all the ob/gyns in Saudi Arabia act the same way, yet many do. If you have had a pleasant experience with an ob/gyn here in Saudi Arabia please refer them in the comments below.
Dr. Hayat @ Hessa Bin Laden Hospital
Dr. Taysir @ International Medical Centre