OB-GYN (Obstetrician-Gynecologist) Questions Health Problems In Pregnancy

What is the difference between an OB-GYN and a Perinatologist?

When there are complications in pregnancy, would it be a better option to visit a perinatologist? Also, how exactly is a perinatologist different from an OB-GYN?

6 Answers

A perinatologist is a subspecialist in OB.
A perinatologist is an ob/gyn with special training in high-risk pregnancy.
A perinatologist is an OBGYN who has had additional training known as a fellowship and specializes in the management of high risk pregnancies. They generally do not perform gyn surgery and do not see patients in the office for annual exams or manage routine pregnancies. They will either consult for your OB provider if your pregnancy is high risk or manage and deliver your pregnancy especially if significantly high risk or premature.
Ob/gyn takes care of all ob & gyn problems. A perinatologist takes care of patients with difficult obstetric problems like triplet pregnancy or difficult diabetes In pregnancy. They normally do not take care of gyn problems.
Depending upon your medical community, a generalist Ob/Gyn takes care of most complications of pregnancy. If you have a genetic condition or a severe complication in a previous pregnancy, see your general Ob/Gyn early, or even pre-conceptually, and s/he will refer you to a perinatologist. Make sure you express your concerns to your Ob/Gyn by asking if your case is appropriate for a perinatology (also called MFM for Maternal Fetal Medicine) consult. Some Perinatologists deliver babies and see patients throughout the pregnancy and others consult only for complicated cases and pre-natal procedures.
I hope this was helpful.

Most sincerely,

Victoria Mohr, MD, FACOG
A perinatologist is an OB/GYN that has additional training in high risk OB problems and situations such as genetics, diabetes, heart problems, etc.

Rob Muller