A 40-year-old, G7, P4, A2, 36 weeks pregnant woman was admitted because of complaints of vaginal bleeding. She also noticed a lack of fetal activity in the 3 days prior to admission. The nurse's first action is to


• Finding the fetal heart tones is the easiest way to check the status of the pregnancy in this situation, and should be done first.

• If no fetal heart tones are noted, a sonogram should be ordered to confirm fetal status.

• Incorrect: There will be no fetal activity if the fetus dies in utero, but palpation is not a diagnostic test.

• Incorrect: An x-ray of the abdomen will not assess whether the fetus is alive or not.

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