If you have symptoms that your GP or pregnancy doctor (obstetrician) thinks could be cancer, you will be referred to a hospital specialist for tests.
The type of specialist you see will depend on the symptoms you have. After they have examined you, they will talk to you about the tests you need.
It is important to find out the cause of your symptoms. The most important factor in having a healthy baby is making sure you are well. But it is natural to worry about whether any of the tests could harm the baby.
Tests to diagnose cancer can usually be done without harming the baby. Your doctors will choose tests that do not risk exposing the baby to a possibly harmful amount of radiation. They usually try to avoid:
- bone scans
- CT (computerised tomography) scans
- PET (positron emission tomography) scans.
Sometimes your doctors might think it is important for you to have a test that should ideally be avoided in pregnancy. If this happens, they will discuss it with you and explain how they can reduce any risk to the baby.
If you have had tests and later find you are pregnant, talk to your doctor. With most tests, there is no risk to the baby, or if there is it is very small.