Guide on How to Choose a Gynae for Your Pregnancy in Malaysia?

To select a doctor, many of us rely on a single recommendation or even a random search on Google. Your gynaecologist or women’s health specialist assists you with your pregnancy, screens you for diseases, helps you plan a family and more. And when you are pregnant, this person (other than yourself) will understand your situation and is the one to ensure two people (you and your baby) are at the best possible health.

gynaecologist malaysia

O&G stands for Obstetrics and Gynaecology. What's the difference between obstetricians and gynaecologists? Most gynaes are qualified with a post-graduate qualification in O&G i.e. MRCOG or Master of Obstetrics and Gynaecology. Therefore, they are trained both in obstetrics as well as gynaecology. An obstetrician specialises in pregnancy related aspects of women's health whereas a gynae specialised in the 'non-pregnancy' related aspects.

Next, you may also need to understand that there are 4 primary subspecialties in ob/gyn:
1) maternal fetal medicine (obstetrics)
2) reproductive endocrinology and infertility (IVF Malaysia etc.)
3) female pelvic and reconstructive surgery (uro-gynae in Malaysia)
4) gynaecologic oncology (gynae-oncologist)

Now that you have a better picture on who you will be dealing with, it's easier for you to make an appointment with the right specialist or subspecialist.

There are also others who have traveled this path ahead of you and they could be your sources of wisdom and support. There are also many self-proclaimed experts on social media dishing out advice and recommendations. However, 'too many cooks spoil the broth'. You and your situation are unique.

This guide is to offer you tips on how to choose the right gynaecologist for yourself. However, we will limit this guide to pregnancy related tips.

1. Plan ahead

If you want to get pregnant soon, I suggest looking for an obstetrician before you get pregnant. You could make an appointment for a ‘pre-natal’ visit. Some obstetricians might prescribe you some supplements in order for you to have the best possible outcome for your pregnancy.

Ask a few questions to make sure he or she is the best for the job. Find out how many deliveries he or she performs in a month and how many of them are normal deliveries and how many of them are by Caeserean sections (C-sections).

2. Word of Mouth

Once you've decided on who and where to see, start digging. Good old-fashioned word of mouth, through girlfriends and family members, can be helpful when searching for your match. This step is for you to build your list of options. If you have a regular family doctor, it's also good to consult your family doctor and seek her advice with regard to choosing a gynae or a hospital.

3. Online research

You could also do your online research with Google. When you enter "How to find the best Gynecologist in Malaysia" …Google will throw up more than 10 pages of search results. So how can an average consumer find out which one is the best?

Bear in mind that the gynecologist’s high ranking on page 1 and visible advertisements on Google may not be truly reflective of the gynecologist’s skills, experience and also how ‘safe’ is the gynecologist. I suggest you go through all the web pages on page 1 and 2, and shortlist a few hospitals with a few names in mind. Add them to the list that you have compiled in step 2.

If you are looking for obstetricians for your pregnancy, its better to see a hospital-based obstetrician as its much safer to deliver your baby in a well equipped hospital. In the event of an emergency, time is of the essence and can make a difference between life and death:(. 

Once you have compiled your list of options, your next step would be to check out the reviews on Google and gynaecologist Malaysia reviews.

4. Your appointment

Once you have shortlisted your options, it's time to call and make your appointment. If your gynae has a very tight schedule and is busy with too many patients, it might be wise to open up your options.

At your appointment, make sure you and your doctor share the same values. If you're going to the gynecologist seeking normal delivery and, upon discussing it at the appointment, discover that your doctor does not believe in normal delivery – head back to step 2.

If you are looking for an affordable gynecologist in Malaysia, you may wish to short-list those from the public hospitals.

5. Patient – Doctor relationship.

A good doctor will engage in a dialogue and listen instead of talking continuously without any eye-contact or just staring at his or her desktop or mobile phone. Expect your doctor to listen well, take your questions and concerns seriously and explain his or her advice and actions. If you are not comfortable with your doctor for whatever the reason, then he or she may not be the right doctor for you. Go back to Step 2.

A good doctor will engage in a dialogue and listen instead of talking continuously without any eye-contact or just staring at his or her desktop or mobile phone. Expect your doctor to listen well, take your questions and concerns seriously and explain his or her advice and actions. If you are not comfortable with your doctor for whatever the reason, then he or she may not be the right doctor for you. 

If your baby is having a 'fetal distress' meaning a sign your baby isn't coping with labour. It might mean they need a caesarean or a C-section to speed up the birth.

Fetal distress is an emergency in which a baby experiences lack of oxygen. Your gynae must immediately address and manage fetal distress to avoid serious complications, such as brain injury, cerebral palsy (spastic baby) and even stillbirth.

Obstetrics is not rocket science. Choose a gynae who has time for you. A very busy gynae does not necessarily mean that she/he is the best gynae for you.

6) Distance to your house or office

Gynae appointments are quite regular. In first trimester, it's roughly every month. When closer to due date, it's almost every 2 weeks. If you have shortlisted a few options and they are all equally suitable, you might choose the one who is nearest to your house or office. Convenience matters. It will save you time and unnecessary stress.

It doesn't make sense to see a gynae in another country, although he or she may be the best in the world. Things might just get more complicated if it involves cross-border visits.

7) High risk pregnancy

Discuss with your gynae on your options if you are in the high risk category. The situation is more complicated as there are more considerations in high risk pregnancy. It's not just the gynae but the supporting team is important i.e. nurses, neonatalogists, equipments etc. 

8) Gynae's expertise and experience

Some gynaes prefer caesarian section (c-section) as they can control the delivery time. As for normal vaginal delivery, the timing is often unpredictable and might happen during the odd hours of the day. Some gynaes will be upfront and will inform you that they don't do normal vaginal delivery. You just need to find another option.

9) Choosing which hospital to deliver

Gynae first or hospital first? The primary person who will be managing your pregnancy is your gynae. Although hospital is one of the considerations, most hospitals in Singapore are well equipped and have well trained supporting staff. If you have a high risk pregnancy, it's better not to place too much emphasis on your preferred hospital. 

10) Maternity Packages in Malaysia

You might wish to check out maternity packages in Malaysia for comparison on the maternity packages for both the public and private hospitals in Malaysia.


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