Everything You Need to Know About Pregnancy Acronyms

An obstetrician is sitting at a table across from a woman who is wearing a light blue sweater with her right hand on the side of her face. The doctor is showing the woman an ultrasound picture on a tablet.

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I’m sure I’m not alone when I talk about how unprepared I was for all that pregnancy throws at you. Sure, I figured there would be morning sickness and achy boobs after I got my big fat positive test, but other things were surprising…like the insane use of pregnancy acronyms, for example.

While the “gestational journey” is undoubtedly beautiful and amazing, it also comes with a huge learning curve for first-time pregnant folks.  

I still recall hopping onto pregnancy and fertility forums for the first time and being shocked by the wide range of nicknames and abbreviations.

EDD, TWW, HPT, LMP – the list continues.

Now, sure, once we get the hang of what all these cute acronyms stand for, it’s a lovely way of communicating without having to constantly spell out words like human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG.)

Figuring them all out, on the other hand…not so easy. If you’re overwhelmed by the barrage of “secret pregnancy codes,” you’re not alone. 

Before you get too stressed, though, please take comfort that we’ve done the hard work for you. Take a look at this helpful list of the most common pregnancy acronyms you might come across! 

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Why Do Pregnancy Acronyms Exist in the First Place?

I know what you’re probably thinking – wouldn’t it just be easier to use the regular word for things instead of creating elaborate codes and abbreviations?

Possibly.

But then again, continually talking about basal body temperature, intracytoplasmic sperm injection, or cervical position doesn’t feel natural either…right?

Pregnancy acronyms might seem confusing initially, but they allow online communities of expectant parents to talk more conversationally with each other. We no longer sound like we’re trying to write a doctoral thesis on the pregnancy process. 

Simply put, pregnancy abbreviations are just easier and more casual.

Popular TTC Acronyms in the Fertility Community

Before the stork makes its big delivery and there’s officially a baby on the way, many of us will actively try to get pregnant. This stage is called “trying to conceive” or “TTC,” and it comes with its own set of acronyms and abbreviations.

Below, you’ll find a list of frequently used TTC and infertility acronyms: 

An African American woman is in an all white bathroom. She is wearing a light pink shirt with her hair in a ponytail. She has her left hand up in the stop gesture and she is leaning over the toilet.
Who knew having a baby would come with its own language? If you’re confused about pregnancy acronyms, it’s time to clarify what they all mean.

Pregnancy Abbreviations You Need to Know

So your TTC stage is over, and there’s officially a baby on the way–yay! Now comes a new collection of pregnancy acronyms we must figure out. The following is a list of abbreviations regarding the early signs and stages of pregnancy:

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Reading Your Ultrasound Made Easy

After you’ve conquered all the acronyms for pregnancy, you’ll also want to know about those involved in the ultrasound process.

Let’s face it; the primary appeal of ultrasounds is the cute first photos of your baby! Most of us don’t even pay attention to the other information on the paper.

BUT, all those other stats and tidbits are just as vital as your little one’s picture! If you’ve ever wondered how to read an ultrasound photo, follow along to find out! There are a few typical acronyms on a pregnancy ultrasound:

  • AC: Abdominal Circumference (The baby’s abdomen, not Mama’s!)
  • AF: Amniotic Fluid
  • BPD: Biparietal Diameter (Baby’s skull)
  • CRL: Crown-Rump Length (A measurement that runs from the top of a Baby’s head to underneath their butt)
  • EFW: Estimated Fetal Weight
  • FHM: Fetal Heart Movements
  • FL: Femur Length
  • GS: Gestational Sac
  • HC:  Head Circumference
  • LGA: Large for Gestational Age
  • PWR: Placental-Weight Ratio (This averages placenta and fetal growth; placental weight divided by estimated birth weight)
  • SGA: Small for Gestational Age
  • TVS: Transvaginal Ultrasound
A calendar has the words DUE DATE in the box for the 15th of the month.
Before you get stressed about all the pregnancy acronyms that are being thrown at you, check out our list of what you need to know!

Language for the Last Trimester & Delivery Room

As you edge towards the end of pregnancy, you’ll start learning about a wide range of new topics. From cervical dilation to effacement, here are a few common acronyms to put in your soon-to-be mommy glossary of terms:

  • CP: Cervical Position
  • CS: Cesarean  Section
  • DD or DS: Dear Son or Dear Daughter
  • DR: Delivery Room
  • FH: Fundal Height (Distance between the top of Mama’s uterus and the pubic bone)
  • FHR: Fetal Heart Rate
  • LTCS: Low Transverse Cesarean Section
  • PP: Postpartum
  • PTL: Preterm Labor
  • ROM: Rupture of Membranes (Water Breaking)
  • SVD: Spontaneous Vaginal Delivery
  • VB: Vaginal Birth
  • VBAC: Vaginal Birth After Cesarean Section

Learn How to Talk Like a Pregnancy Expert

As you can see, pregnancy is a pretty involved process. For the most part, though, all you need to focus on is the excitement of becoming a new parent. 

Don’t let the seemingly endless number of pregnancy-related abbreviations scare you, though! 

Use them or don’t; as long as you and your baby stay healthy, that’s all you need to know. This list is just a helpful guide to understanding the gestational jargon you might encounter in your research or at the doctor’s office.

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How many of these pregnancy acronyms were you already familiar with?

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