The American Academy of Pediatrics policy statement "Options Counseling for the Pregnant Adolescent Patient" recommends the basic content of the pediatrician's counseling for an adolescent facing a new diagnosis of pregnancy. However, options counseling is just one aspect of what may be one of the more challenging scenarios in the pediatric office. Pediatricians must remain alert to the possibility of pregnancy among their adolescent female patients. When discovering symptoms suggestive of pregnancy, pediatricians must obtain a relevant history, perform diagnostic testing and properly interpret the results, and understand the significance of the results from the patient perspective and reveal them to the patient in a sensitive manner. If the patient is indeed pregnant, the pediatrician, in addition to providing comprehensive options counseling, may need to help recruit adult support for the patient and should offer continued assistance to the adolescent and her family after the office visit. All pediatricians should be aware of the legal aspects of adolescent reproductive care and the resources for pregnant adolescents in their communities. This clinical report presents a more comprehensive view of the evaluation and management of pregnancy in the adolescent patient and a context for options counseling.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health