By Neus Ferrando Gilabert BSc, MSc (embryologist).
Last Update: 09/23/2014

In only one week you’ll be in your last week of pregnancy: it is very probable you’re feeling fed up with the pregnancy and much heavier, and normal duties, such as getting dressed or putting on your shoes, are almost impossible for you.

Once you go to your gynecologist for an appointment, he will make an exam of your abdomen to see in which position is your baby exactly. Another routine test consists in examining the cervix to verify its conditions, if it has turned thinner or has dilated. After 39 weeks of pregnancy, your cervix is getting ready for the labour; you’ll probably feel heavy and sometimes experience quite strong Braxton Hicks contractions.

Baby development in the 39th week of pregnancy

Amniotic fluid is renewed every 3 hours; your baby’s intestine is full of black-green meconium, formed by food glands secretions, together with bile pigment, lanugo and intestinal wall cells. These will be the first stool after the labour.

At the end of this week, the baby is about 50 cm long and weights approximately 3,440 grams on average. If your baby’s weight is between 2,810 and 3,900 grams you shouldn’t worry, because he is within the normal range of values.

The labour can take place at any time: you should have everything prepared for the longed moment. You should learn how to recognize the symptoms, like strong contractions, mucous plug loss and breaking of the amniotic sac, widely known as breaking the waters. If this happens, call your doctor: you are going into labour.

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Authors and contributors

 Neus Ferrando Gilabert
BSc, MSc
Embryologist
Bachelor's Degree in Biology from the University of Valencia (UV). Postgraduate Course in Biotechnology of Human Assisted Reproduction from the Miguel Hernández University of Elche (UMH). Experience managing Embryology and Andrology Labs at Centro Médico Manzanera (Logroño, Spain). More information