7 weeks pregnant - signs, fetal development and what to consider

All the info you need to know...

Pregnancy week by week
(Image credit: Future)

Being 7 weeks pregnant is an exciting, yet tense time for many. 

While this is an exciting time for you and your family, anxieties regarding a miscarriage may also be playing on your mind. These concerns are completely normal during your seventh week of pregnancy, so we've gathered together some vital information in this article. This is part of our general pregnancy week by week advice. 

Symptoms at 7 weeks pregnant

You're pregnant and happy but now the worries start to creep in. The first 12 weeks of pregnancy carry the highest risk of miscarriage, which is why, for many women, these early weeks of pregnancy can be a stressful time.

Around one in 10 women will experience some form of vaginal bleeding in the early stages of pregnancy, but this doesn't always mean there's a problem. However, once you've had a positive pregnancy test, there is around a one in five risk of having a miscarriage in the first three months and bleeding can be a warning sign of this.

If you're worried, visit your GP or midwife who will ask you questions about the bleeding and your pregnancy. They may carry out a vaginal examination as well as a urine pregnancy test and blood tests.

You may be booked for an ultrasound scan at your local Early Pregnancy Assessment Unit (EPAU). This is most likely to be a transvaginal scan where a probe is inserted into your vagina to take images of your womb. It is perfectly safe and will not cause miscarriage.

Fetal development at 7 weeks pregnant

Your baby's 9mm long, about the size of a blueberry. The big news this week continues to be organ growth and development. Intestines are developing, the heart chambers are forming and the hemispheres of the brain are growing. They even have an appendix and a pancreas, while their liver is busy churning out red blood cells.

Their umbilical cord, containing the two arteries and one vein that are their lifeline is supplying them with oxygen and nutrients through the placenta to which it is connected. Although technically still an embryo, dark spots can be seen where eyes are starting to form. There are openings for the nostrils and hollows where the ears will develop. Leg buds form and hands form as flat paddles on the arms.

7 weeks pregnant:


Things to consider at 7 weeks pregnant

Pregnant women are entitled to free NHS prescriptions, but in order to claim them you'll need to fill in a form FW8 in order to get a maternity exemption certificate or card (Matex). Your doctor will give this to you at the start of your pregnancy. The good news is you also get free dental care.

If you think your work might pose a risk to your unborn baby, ask your GP to write to your employer asking for a health and safety risk assessment. The Health and Safety Executives guidance identifies the types of work that pregnant women should avoid.

These include:

  • Manual handling of heavy loads
  • Work at unsuitable workstations
  • Your work may expose you to stressful or potentially violent situations
  • Work in confined spaces
  • Work involving exposure to lead

Further advice and information:

Editor in Chief

Anna Bailey has been the editor of GoodtoKnow since 2018. Before joining the team she was Features Editor at MSN UK, where she oversaw Family Health and Days Out. Previously, she was Digital Lifestyle Editor for the broadcaster UKTV, and Lifestyle Editor for ITV.com. Anna studied Multi-Media Journalism at Bournemouth University and went on to gain her NCTJ and NCE journalism qualifications. Anna is responsible for driving the direction and editorial strategy of Goodto. A mum and experienced baby product tester, she is passionate about providing safe, trustworthy, and relatable advice for families of all kinds.