Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Pregnant in Japan: Part 7

In Japan, at 32 weeks you change from getting check up examinations at your clinic to going to wherever you are planning on giving birth.  For me, that is Higashihiroshima Medical Center.  It is a hospital that is about 20-25 minutes from our apartment and is the biggest hospital near us.

We were pleasantly surprised when we were checking in at the OBGYN desk by a man who spoke excellent English.  He informed us that he was a doctor, but not my doctor.  He is actually a neurologist that helps out with translation occasionally for foreigners.  He was a great help and made us feel that the hospital really wanted us to understand what was going on and that they wanted us to be comfortable.  

We learned a bunch of useful things.  The birth will be attended by both a doctor and a midwife.  The midwife takes care of things unless there is a problem and then the doctor takes over.  The midwife and doctor that will attend the birth is who ever is on shift at the time.  Some speak more English than others so the hospital recommends that we have some sort of a translator available, they will not necessarily be able to provide one.  Since birth isn't one of those things with a predictable time, it gets complicated.  We are currently working with our insurance to see what our options are.

The ultrasound equipment that they had was much higher resolution than the machine at my normal clinic.  The baby is definitely a girl!  She also doesn't seem to like the ultrasounds since whenever it gets near her face so we can see what she looks like she immediately puts her arms up and hides.  It's very cute.

The other interesting thing is that in order to be allowed in to the birthing room Jeff has to take a "birthing class".  Since it is not in English, our neurologist doctor will help us out in two weeks when we have our next appointment and work with a midwife to give us the information we need.  .

All in all, I feel a little more confident about my medical situation here.  There are still subtleties that I feel are lost in translation, but it was a little better and they were better able to address some of weird things my body is doing and let me know what to worry about and what is ignorable.  For the most part the think my pregnancy in on a "good course".  

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