What we do
We see women with pain and/or bleeding in early pregnancy.
The Early Pregnancy Unit is not a walk-in clinic: it is open Monday to Friday and is by appointment only. Appointments can only be made by doctors or other health professionals like midwives. If your doctor or midwife thinks you need to be seen at the Early Pregnancy Unit, they will refer you here, making an appointment on your behalf. Referrals may be made by:
- The Accident and Emergency Department
- Community Midwives
- The Ultrasound Department
- The Gynaecology Assessment Unit
- The Urgent Care Centre
The women who are referred to us for an appointment have had a positive pregnancy test and are between 5 and 14 weeks pregnant. We also offer blood tests and follow-up appointments for women who have suffered three consecutive miscarriages. Self-referrals are accepted for women who have had a previous ectopic or molar pregnancy.
What to expect while under our care
We are a nurse-led service, which means that most if not all of your care will be administered by a qualified nurse. If you have an appointment here, you will first see the nurse who will take a history from you and possibly a urine sample. If necessary, the nurse will refer you for an ultrasound scan. The scan will either be abdominal (when the scanner is placed on your tummy) or vaginal (when the scanner is put inside your vagina). Then you will see a nurse who will explain the results of your scan and further care. Please view our leaflets for more information about scanning. If you experience pain or further bleeding after visiting the EPU, you can call during opening hours to speak to a nurse about your concerns. If the department is closed you can phone the gynaecology wards on 01273 696955 ext 64402 (Brighton) or 01444 441881 extension 8370 / 65686 (Haywards Heath).
Links to sources of information, advice and support
We understand that pain or bleeding in pregnancy can be frightening but it isn’t unusual and doesn’t necessarily mean that there is a problem. You may not even have to visit the EPU. If you look on the internet for more information, remember that not everything online is reliable. For more information, support and advice about early pregnancy conditions, look first at:
- Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists
- The Association of Early Pregnancy Units
- NHS Choices: bleeding in early pregnancy
- Alternatives: local support group
Level 11, Thomas Kemp Tower, Royal Sussex County Hospital. This is not a walk-in clinic. It is open from 8am to 6pm, Monday to Friday by appointment only
Horsted Keynes Ward, 2nd floor, Princess Royal Hospital. This is not a walk in clinic. It is open from 8.30am to 12 midday on Monday, Wednesday and Friday by appointment only.
The telephone numbers below are only for health professionals who wish to refer in, or existing patients under the care of EPU. For advice on problems experienced in early pregnancy please dial 111.
Royal Sussex County Hospital: 01273 696955 ext 64402
Princess Royal Hospital: 01444 441881 extension 8370 / 65686