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Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy

4.14  ·  Rating details ·  5,045 ratings  ·  458 reviews
This new Mayo Clinic book on pregnancy provides you with practical information and reassurance on pregnancy and childbirth. Compiled by Mayo Clinic experts in obstetrics, it offers a clear, thorough and reliable reference for this exciting and sometimes unpredictable journey. This comprehensive book includes: A month-by-month look at mom and baby, In-depth "Decision Guides ...more
Paperback, 614 pages
Published April 13th 2004 by HarperCollins Publishers (first published April 1st 2004)
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Average rating 4.14  · 
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 ·  5,045 ratings  ·  458 reviews

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May 09, 2012 rated it really liked it
I haven't read this one cover to cover, but I'm including it here anyway because it is by far my favorite pregnancy book. Most of them try to hold your hand, but then end up making you feel guilty that you're going to ruin your child's life if you don't do things exactly the way they describe in the book.

This one, however, is so clinic that there are no value judgments whatsoever. They explain that there are many different ways for pregnancies to progress and explain the different ways medical p
Jul 25, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonfiction
The very savvy marketing people make sure to note conspicuously on the cover that this book was written by doctors who are also parents. And you know what? That's a pretty useful thing to know. I'm not one of those people who believe that "one mom's simple trick to losing a belly" is automatically a smart diet plan or that a schoolteacher is likely to invent a cold prevention drug that the pharmaceutical companies couldn't. I prefer to leave my medicine to people who have actually been trained a ...more
Jan 30, 2011 rated it really liked it
I chose this book as my "pregnancy reference guide" in lieu of "What to Expect..." due to its negative reviews. Fortunately, this book has the goods to back it up. Authoritative, objective, and grounded, this book omits the gushy "mommy" tones that I find in most pregnancy books and leave only the facts, including lots of statistics and outside additional sources to consider. This book also includes a lot of information on pre-pregnancy, labor, and post-pregnancy, which is nice. The middle of th ...more
Jennifer Ochoa
Sep 29, 2015 rated it really liked it
The worst part about my first trimester is that nausea kept me from reading. (Only 2 books read the whole month of September! ARGH!) I spent most of the last month in bed watching a marathon of Curb Your Enthusiasm, because only Larry David could make me feel better through his discomfort, haha. I did consult this reference guide a number of times in my misery (primarily to find out WHEN DOES THIS CRAP STOP?) and found it to be a good, scientific source of information. I detest anything cutesy, ...more
Feb 08, 2010 rated it it was amazing
By far the best pregnancy book out there. Much better than the most popular pregnancy book, which I borrowed and read a couple of years ago (you know which one I mean). First thing, this is a resource with academic credentials written by 2 OBs and 1 CNM and endorsed by the Mayo Clinic, v. the "mom" credentials of the other book where the author has no academic credentials. The differences go on from there.

Each month is broken out by explaining what is happening to baby and what's happening to m
Jan 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the perfect balance of information and clarity. It is exciting to read the weekly changes for the baby.
Jan 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2012-finished
Very informative and straightforward, particularly for someone like me who has no interest in giving birth anywhere other than a hospital. If you're interested in an alternative birthing arrangement, you won't find much information on that here, but that's probably not surprising, given who puts the book out. Other common pregnancy decisions (amnio or not? pain meds during labor or not? breast or bottle?) are described with a nonjudgmental rundown of the pros and cons of both sides.

Other than th
Jun 08, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2011
I eschewed the standard What to Expect When You Are Expecting because I am the type of person who thinks the worst case scenario will always happen to her, and after a few pages of What to Expect I knew reading it would turn me into a nutcase. The Mayo Clinic Guide is a straightforward, nonjudgmental, scientific reference book for pregnancy. There are no ponies and unicorns, no references to miraculous angels from heaven, no judgment on the normally controversial stuff like nursing versus formul ...more
Maria Shuffit
Apr 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
When I found out that I was pregnant, I check out a ton of pregnancy books from the library before choosing which to get my own copy of. I picked a lot of the big, well-known titles, including What To Expect When You're Expecting, and some lesser known titles, but this one came out on top.

What I valued about it over others was simply the layout. While I felt that some if the other pregnancy guides were too heavy and verbose, the Mayo guide broke down the information in fairly brief, basic sectio
Lee Richardson
Feb 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Packed with useful, reliable information on pregnancy. Not a page turner, but a great reference!
Sadaf Matinkhoo
May 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: medical
I read the second edition from 2018. Very comprehensive and a fantastic reference book to have on hands throughout pregnancy.
Aug 27, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Straightforward, comprehensive, medical and evidence-based overview of pregnancy, labor & delivery, and postpartum issues. This is a reference book, so it reads sort of like an 8th grade textbook. Which is fine-- it should be easy to navigate and understand-- but it's not an especially engaging book to just sit down and read. But if you need a basic reference guide for what to expect from pregnancy, a book like this seems essential. ...more
Ravioli Rachel
May 06, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
You know what this means!!!

Physical copy would probably be a bit easier to navigate and flip around to different sections then the e-book was...
Dec 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Okay, so I didn't technically read this book cover to cover, but 1. that's not how reference books are generally supposed to be read, and 2. I think I've earned the right to count this as "read," since I went into preterm labor and basically skipped my third trimester, rendering much of the book irrelevant. This is probably the best pregnancy book available, as it gives you practical information without being fear-mongering (as many pregnancy books are wont to be). In fact, it mostly lumps all t ...more
Sep 06, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is the best overall book for science-backed and even-handed advice about what to expect from pregnancy. As another reviewer mentioned, it's very clinical and basically value-judgement-free which is a relief in a space over-crowded with books with opinionated and often unsubstantiated takes. If you only read one book about pregnancy, this would be an excellent choice. (And certainly much better than the panic-inducing, paternalistic tone of What to Expect!) ...more
Aug 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book is written in a easy to read and understand manner. I felt it gave me a good understanding of what to expect and also had some tables that are useful for a quick reference.
Laura Burdick
Apr 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
(I have the more updated version)

I haven't read every word of this yet, but it has proved to be such a helpful, factual resource as we're going though this pregnancy. Highly recommend!
Aug 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2020
An excellent source of science-backed information. None of the frills of a usual pregnancy guide, just straight forward information and data presented in a useful, intelligent way. Exactly the kind of resource I was looking for to help me prepare for IVF and (hopefully) pregnancy!
Whitney Grindberg
Dec 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Lots of good info. Takes you week by week. Way better than What To Be Afraid of When You're Expecting. ...more
Apr 10, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
I loved the monthly illustrations that show how big the baby is.
Oct 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A fantastic resource. I read every chapter except one (about miscarriage... I just couldn't do it personally), and I'd recommend it to every woman looking to conceive or already pregnant.

A side note, even if you don't read this book, definitely read a pregnancy book of some kind while you are pregnant. A lot goes on, you'll have a lot of questions, and books like this put you at ease and will arm you with great information. It's always better to be informed when it comes to pregnancy and childb
Oct 31, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
More of a reference book than a cover-to-cover book. I was still in the market for a month-by-month book when I initially grabbed this. It's fine for that, if brief. The real value is in the "decision guides," alphabetical symptom index, and complications discussions.

Which raises an interesting question for me. Every time I opened this book to look up heartburn or carpel tunnel or whatever, I always snagged on the word "healthy" in the title. It's just such a meaningless word in this context. Pa
Nov 27, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This book is a lifesaver, and is the only pregnancy book I consult regularly. My husband also finds it helpful. It gives you just enough info that you feel informed, but not so much that you feel like you're always on the verge of miscarriage. It has a few charts to consult if you're experiencing certain side effects (nausea, bleeding, dizziness, etc. and then in the third trimester section, cramping, etc.); the charts are possibly the most helpful thing in the book because they have rows for va ...more
Do not read What to Expect When You're Expecting. Read this instead. ...more
Valkyrie Vu
I'm still reading and re-reading through this book but I think at this point it's quite fair to give a review.

This book is for you if you are a first time mom like me and freak the hell out of all this pregnancy thing lol. I feel the urge to devour information , to know what is happening and going to happen during this journey. This book gives me a lot of information , if not all I need to know about pregnancy and new born care and breast-feeding etc. You name it . I love it as it doesn't give
Oct 03, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This may be my new go-to pregnancy guide, and I wish this was considered the "Pregnancy Bible" rather than the horrific "What to Expect While You're Expecting." Well organized, honest and straightforward without being condescending & fear-mongering, and encourages mothers-to-be to be active, informed participants in their prenatal care rather than patronizingly stating that you should "just so whatever the good doctor says..." This book is an incredibly helpful, informative pregnancy resource.

Disclaimer: I didn't read this from cover to cover, but did read most of the salient chapters and sections.

The book is kind of an infodump. It's good if you like that, or if you're stranded on an island with no internet and no doctors. But if you're stranded on an island and pregnant, then you probably have bigger worries than what pregnancy books are worth reading.

Parts that I found helpful:

- Breakdown of what the mom should expect each couple of weeks.
- The fetus's growth and development broke
Jun 03, 2012 rated it really liked it
Has been a great companion during my wife's pregnancy. Comes from a very traditional medical perspective, both a plus and a minus for couples looking at both traditional and non-tradition methods of medical care. From my understanding, much better than "What to Expect While Your Expecting" if you really want to understand the development of your baby and its effect on the mother. ...more
Jan 03, 2011 rated it really liked it
When you are pregnant, you want to know two things:

What's going on with the baby?
What's happening to me?

This is a no-nonsense week-to-week guide to those two things. It leaves out all the sanctimonious bullshit contained in "What to expect..." because seriously, who needs that?
Sep 05, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: natalism
a great reference. when the fetal is due, the book will even extract it from the birthing canal at no extra cost. (suffice it to state that the book was not allowed to participate as directly in the commencement of pregnancy.)
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