What Is A High Risk Pregnancy?

What Is A High Risk Pregnancy
What are the potential complications of high-risk pregnancy? – A high-risk pregnancy can be life-threatening for the pregnant person or fetus. Serious complications can include:

Preeclampsia (high blood pressure from pregnancy). Eclampsia (seizure from pregnancy). Preterm delivery., Excessive bleeding during labor and delivery, or after birth. Low or high birth weight. Birth defects. Problems with the fetus’s brain development. Neonatal intensive care unit admission for your baby. Intensive care unit admission for you.,

Getting early and thorough prenatal care is critical. It’s the best way to detect and diagnose a high-risk pregnancy. Be sure to tell your healthcare provider about your health history and any past pregnancies. If you do have a high-risk pregnancy, you may need special monitoring throughout your pregnancy. Tests to monitor your health and the health of the fetus may include:

to check for genetic conditions or certain congenital conditions (birth defects)., which uses sound waves to create images of the fetus to screen for congenital conditions. Monitoring to ensure the fetus is getting enough oxygen, such as a, which monitors their breathing, movements and amniotic fluid using ultrasound, and a non-stress test, which monitors their heart rate.

Management for a high-risk pregnancy will depend on your specific risk factors. Your care plan may include:

Closer follow-up with your obstetrician. Consultation with a maternal fetal medicine (high-risk pregnancy) specialist. Consultation with other medical specialists. More ultrasounds and closer fetal evaluation. Home blood pressure monitoring. Careful monitoring of medications used to manage preexisting conditions.

If your health or the health of the fetus is in danger, your healthcare provider may recommend or a C-section. You can reduce your risk of pregnancy complications by:

Avoiding drugs and alcohol. Identifying potential health risks before getting pregnant. Tell your doctor about your familial and personal medical history. Maintaining a before pregnancy. Managing any preexisting health conditions you may have. Making sure any long-term medications are safe to take during pregnancy., Planning pregnancies between the ages of 18 and 34. Practicing safe sex.

It’s possible for pregnancy-related complications to occur up to six weeks after a pregnancy ends. Pay close attention to your health. Alert your healthcare provider right away if you notice anything abnormal. A note from Cleveland Clinic What does high-risk pregnancy mean? A variety of factors can make a pregnancy high risk.
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What is considered a high-risk pregnancy?

What is high-risk pregnancy? – A high-risk pregnancy is one in which a woman and her fetus face a higher-than-normal chance of experiencing problems. These risks may be due to factors in the pregnancy itself, or they may stem from preexisting maternal medical conditions, such as cancer, diabetes, or lupus. Events that occur during a pregnancy may also lead to high-risk status.
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Can high-risk pregnancy be successful?

There a few moments in life as powerful as the elation and joy of getting pregnant. If you’ve been diagnosed with a high-risk pregnancy I know how quickly those emotions can turn into anxiety and concern. But luckily with early and regular prenatal care, many women with high-risk pregnancies can still have healthy babies and safe outcomes.

A high-risk pregnancy diagnosis may require lifestyle changes, which is why it’s important to have a strong support system and plan for getting the care you need. Once patients are diagnosed with a high-risk pregnancy from their OB/GYN they are usually referred to a Maternal-Fetal Medicine Specialist who is trained to help women facing unexpected problems during pregnancy.

However, it’s important to note that you do not need to have a high-risk pregnancy diagnosis to be referred to a high-risk specialist like myself. As a Fort Lauderdale Perinatologist, I encourage all pregnant women to see an MFM at any stage of pregnancy for a proactive measure in their care.

  1. Once my patients arrive at my office, they typically have many questions and concerns.
  2. If you’re facing a high-risk pregnancy, here are seven tips for managing the health and wellbeing of yourself and your baby: 1.
  3. Stay Informed What classifies a high-risk pregnancy is anything that could potentially harm the health or life of the mother and fetus.

There are several factors that make up a high-risk pregnancy ranging from high blood pressure in pregnancy and developing preeclampsia, placenta previa, having twins or higher order multiples, age of the mother, diabetes, multiple miscarriages, fetal abnormalities or pre-existing health conditions.

It’s important to understand the risks associated with your condition and get accurate and reliable information. If you suspect you may be at high-risk prior to becoming pregnant, it’s advisable to schedule a preconception counseling appointment with a pregnancy specialist like myself to discuss your options.

If are already pregnant, it’s important to develop an open line of communication with your physicians. Keep a notebook with a list of ongoing questions and if you do decide to research information about your condition online, stick to credible sources such as the patent education pages of the Centers for Disease Control, The Society for Maternal Fetal Medicine and American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology.2.

Have a Support System Surround yourself with family and friends during this time and communicate your needs. Depending on your condition, you may be experiencing lifestyle changes that require you to scale back on commitments and obligations. Have a reliable team of medical professionals to guide you through your pregnancy as well as family and friends.

You may also want to consider joining a high-risk pregnancy support group to express your concerns and feelings in a safe space. The Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine has a list of support groups for various types of pregnancies. There are also many Facebook groups created for women experiencing a high-risk pregnancy.3.

  • Create a Plan with Your Health Care Providers By creating a proactive plan for maternal care and delivery, you will have peace of mind as you progress toward your due date.
  • There are many things to consider for your care and how any pregnancy disorder and disease will impact your birth plan.
  • It’s important to ensure that your MFM and OB/GYN have an open line of communication and you are attending all prenatal care appointments.

Your condition might also determine where you will deliver your baby. For example, most hospitals have a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, but not all of them are a level 3 NICU or higher. Hospitals without a level 3 NICU typically transport critical cases to another facility that can care for newborns after delivery, which often results in the mother and baby being separated.

  1. Talk to your doctor about options for delivery.4.
  2. Put Your Self-Care First By making self-care a priority, you will ensure a better outcome for yourself and your baby.
  3. This means eating a healthy diet, reducing exposure to toxins and harmful environmental factors, exercise, getting enough sleep and avoiding situations that create stress.

Research shows a correlation between stress and disease so maintaining a healthy lifestyle can have an improvement in your pregnancy and delivery.5. Listen to Your Body Your body holds wisdom. Take time to slow down and listen to what your body is telling you.

If you need more rest, allow yourself to rest. Your body works overtime to grow a fetus, so you may not have the energy you are used to having. And if you feel that something isn’t normal, be sure to contact your OBGYN provider as soon as possible.6. Address Mental Health Concerns Studies show that depression is common for women who have been hospitalized for obstetric pregnancy complications.

It’s important to address difficult feelings that may arise and to know it’s normal to experience a wide range of emotions. Many women struggle with blaming themselves for their conditions, but it’s important to know you aren’t alone. Ask your OB/GYN or MFM for recommendations for a mental health professional if you are experiencing these symptoms or if they are interfering with your ability to perform daily tasks.7.

Manage Your Mindset Having outlets for reducing stress and thoughts that trigger anxiety is important for your overall wellbeing and if you’re experiencing pregnancy issues. Staying calm and relaxed will help your overall wellbeing. Despite how serious things may feel, be sure to take time to do things you enjoy or help you to feel relaxed.

This could be going on a walk with a friend, listening to a meditation app or taking a yoga class. These activities will help you regain a sense of normalcy and take your mind off your worries and concerns. If you found this article helpful be sure check back here for future blogs and follow me on Facebook and Instagram for even more helpful pregnancy tips and information!
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Can stress cause high-risk pregnancy?

How can stress affect your pregnancy? Feeling stressed is common during pregnancy because pregnancy is a time of many changes. Your family life, your body and your emotions are changing. You may welcome these changes, but they can add new stresses to your life.

High levels of stress that continue for a long time may cause health problems, like high blood pressure and heart disease. During pregnancy, stress can increase the chances of having a premature baby (born before 37 weeks of pregnancy) or a low-birthweight baby (weighing less than 5 pounds, 8 ounces).

Babies born too soon or too small are at increased risk for health problems, What causes stress during pregnancy? The causes of stress are different for every woman, but here are some common causes during pregnancy:

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You may be dealing with the discomforts of pregnancy, like morning sickness, constipation, being tired or having a backache. Your hormones are changing, which can cause your mood to change. Mood swings can make it harder to handle stress. You may be worried about what to expect during labor and birth or how to take care of your baby, If you work, you may have to manage job tasks and prepare your team for when you take maternity leave. You may worry about how you eat, drink and feel and how these things affect your baby.

What types of stress can cause pregnancy problems? Stress is not all bad. When you handle it right, a little stress can help you take on new challenges. Regular stress during pregnancy, such as work deadlines, probably don’t add to pregnancy problems. However, serious types of stress during pregnancy may increase your chances of certain problems, like premature birth,

Negative life events. These are things like divorce, serious illness or death in the family, or losing a job or home. Catastrophic events. These include earthquakes, hurricanes or terrorist attacks. Long-lasting stress. This type of stress can be caused by having problems with money, being abused, being homeless or having serious health problems. Depression or anxiety. Depression is a medical condition that causes feelings of sadness and a loss of interest in things you like to do. It can affect how you feel, think and act and can interfere with your daily life. It needs treatment to get better. Anxiety is a feeling of worry or fear of things that may happen. Both conditions may make it hard to take care of yourself and your baby. Depression and anxiety are common and treatable so talk to your provider if you feel depressed or anxious. If you have these conditions before pregnancy, talk to your provider before stopping or starting any medications. Quitting suddenly can cause serious problems for you and your baby. If you need to stop taking medicine or switch medicines, your health care provider can help you make changes safely. Neighborhood stress, Some women may have stress from living in a neighborhood with poverty and crime. Racism. Some women may face stress from racism during their lives. This may help explain why African-American women in the United States are more likely to have premature and low-birthweight babies than women from other racial or ethnic groups. Pregnancy-related stress, Some women may feel serious stress about pregnancy. They may be worried about pregnancy loss, the health of their baby or about how they’ll cope with labor and birth or becoming a parent. If you feel this way, talk to your health care provider.

How does stress cause pregnancy problems? We don’t completely understand the effects of stress on pregnancy. But certain stress-related hormones may play a role in causing certain pregnancy complications. Serious or long-lasting stress may affect your immune system, which protects you from infection.

Normal pregnancy discomforts, like trouble sleeping, body aches and morning sickness may feel even worse with stress You may have problems eating, like not eating enough or eating too much, This can make you underweight or cause you to gain too much weight during pregnancy. It also may increase your risk of having gestational diabetes and preterm labor. Stress may lead to high blood pressure during pregnancy. This puts you at risk of a serious high blood pressure condition called preeclampsia, premature birth and having a low-birthweight infant. Stress also may affect how you respond to certain situations. Some women deal with stress by smoking cigarettes, drinking alcohol or taking street drugs, which can lead to serious health problems in you and you baby.

Many women worry that stress may lead to miscarriage, the death of a baby before 20 weeks of pregnancy. While extra stress isn’t good for your overall health, there’s no evidence that stress causes miscarriage. How can post-traumatic stress disorder affect pregnancy? Post-traumatic stress disorder (also called PTSD) is a disorder that develops when you have problems after you experience a shocking, scary or dangerous event.

Serious anxiety Flashbacks of the event Nightmares Physical responses (like a racing heartbeat or sweating) when reminded of the event

Women who have PTSD may be more likely than women without it to have a premature or low-birthweight baby. They also are more likely than other women to have risky health behaviors, such as smoking cigarettes, drinking alcohol, abusing medications or taking street drugs.

Doing these things can increase the chances of having pregnancy problems. If you think you may have PTSD, talk to your provider or a mental health professional. Treatments for PTSD include medications and therapy. Can high levels of stress in pregnancy affect your baby’s health later in life? Some studies show that high levels of stress in pregnancy may cause certain problems during childhood, like having trouble paying attention or being afraid.

It’s possible that stress also may affect your baby’s brain development or immune system. How can you reduce stress during pregnancy? Here are some ways to help you reduce stress:

Know that the discomforts of pregnancy are only temporary. Ask your provider about how to handle these discomforts. Stay healthy and fit. Eat healthy foods, get plenty of sleep and exercise (with your provider’s OK). Exercise can help reduce stress and also helps prevent common pregnancy discomforts. Cut back on activities you don’t need to do. For example, ask your partner to help with chores around the house. Try relaxation activities, like prenatal yoga or meditation. They can help you manage stress and prepare for labor and birth. Take a childbirth education class so you know what to expect during pregnancy and when your baby arrives. Practice the breathing and relaxation methods you learn in your class. If you’re working, plan ahead to help you and your employer get ready for your time away from work. Use any time off you may have to get extra time to relax.

The people around you may help with stress relief too. Here are some ways to reduce stress with the help of others:

Have a good support network, which may include your partner, family and friends. Or ask your provider about resources in the community that may be helpful. Figure out what’s making you stressed and talk to your partner, a friend, family or your provider about it. If you think you may have depression or anxiety talk to your provider right away. Getting treatment early is important for your health and your baby’s health. Ask for help from people you trust. Accept help when they offer. For example, you may need help cleaning the house, or you may want someone to go with you to your prenatal visits,

Last reviewed: October, 2019
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Does high-risk pregnancy mean C section?

It is scary to be told by your doctor that you have a high-risk pregnancy. Everyone would rather not have a high-risk pregnancy. But women who are information can mitigate their risks and the most likely outcome is a healthy baby. When a woman’s pregnancy is considered “high risk”, it means that due to complications with either the mother or baby, additional care and precaution is needed to have a successful delivery.

  1. There are a wide variety of reasons as to why a pregnancy can be classified as high risk, ranging from medical needs to external environmental factors that affect the pregnancy.
  2. Some women may have prior health conditions that make them more likely to be classified with a high-risk pregnancy.
  3. Other women may become a high risk after developing complications during pregnancy despite being previously healthy.

Problems that develop with a high-risk pregnancy can be mild or severe depending on the underlying cause, but regardless of how it came to be, complications during pregnancy generally continue throughout the rest of a woman’s gestational period and may even persist after delivery.

Therefore, when a pregnancy is high risk it is vital that a woman and her doctor take extra care to monitor the development of the baby as well as the mother’s safety and wellbeing. Causes of a High-Risk Pregnancy There are several maternal health conditions that can be combined with other factors to result in a high-risk pregnancy classification.

This means that accurately and fully informing doctors of the mother’s prior medical history and any prior pregnancy complications (particularly premature deliveries ) can be critically important to getting a pregnancy treated as high risk. Complications in a prior pregnancy do not automatically mean that any subsequent pregnancies will be high risk, but making a plan with your doctor will ensure the best outcome for you and your baby.

Blood disordersChronic kidney diseaseMental illnesses High blood pressure HIV/AIDS LupusAge of the woman Obesity Thyroid disorders Diabetes

If you have any of these conditions, it is best to consult with your doctor to determine what can be implemented to mitigate any negative effects on you or your baby’s health. Even if your pregnancy becomes high-risk, there are many medications and treatments available that can help protect your child.

Environmental Influences A high-risk pregnancy is not always triggered by underlying medical conditions. There are different environmental factors that can cause a pregnancy to develop complications and become high risk. One of the most significant environmental factors is the mother’s lifestyle. Unhealthy lifestyles can have adverse effects on the development of your child, and certain activities should be restricted or limited while pregnant.

Smoking during pregnancy can cause a child to be born with a low birth weight. A child with a low birth rate is at an increased risk of developmental delays and disorders, as well as more susceptible to infections. Some children exposed to smoking in the womb develop childhood asthma, requiring additional care to facilitate breathing when they are born.

  • Consuming alcohol while pregnant is also generally warned against, due to complications that can occasionally be fatal to the baby.
  • Excessive amounts of alcohol being supplied to the womb can cause the baby to be born with permanent developmental problems, such as fetal alcohol syndrome.
  • Fetal alcohol syndrome is an incurable condition that includes a wide list of symptoms, including physical deformities and mental disabilities.
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It is important to note that even if you have never experienced complications during pregnancy and have maintained a healthy lifestyle, some women will still develop problems. Sometimes there is no definite cause or reason for the problem and cannot be prevented with medical assistance.

Birth defects Gestational diabetes Growth and development problems Preeclampsia

Prenatal Care With High-Risk Pregnancies When it comes to prenatal care with a high-risk pregnancy, there will be a much more in-depth approach to monitoring the baby compared to normal pregnancies. You should expect to have frequent prenatal visits that could last longer than an average appointment.

  • For high-risk pregnancies that are facing severe complications, a specialist may be brought in to provide insight.
  • A maternal-fetal medical doctor (MFM) is a trained specialist that specifically cares for women with high-risk pregnancies.
  • An MFM can work together with your gynecologist to create treatment plans tailored to your specific needs.

High-Risk Pregnancy and Labor Labor and delivery is always a potentially hazardous process in high-risk pregnancies. At a minimum, it means some alternative methods of delivery are simply not possible. Home births or any type of natural birthing centers will generally not be an option for mothers with a high-risk pregnancy because of the inherent dangers to mother and baby.

Delivery in a hospital is really the only safe option, as there are proper tools and faculty to respond quickly to any problems that may arise. In certain circumstances, a vaginal birth may be too risky and a C-section may be needed to safely deliver the baby. In addition, women who are having multiples are at a higher risk of going into early labor.

There are many possible complications and outcomes with a high-risk pregnancy, so it is best to talk with your doctor about the best ways to physically and mentally prepare for labor. Avoiding Possible Complications With any pregnancy, regardless of risk factor, maintaining a close relationship with your prenatal doctor is essential to caring for your baby during their development.

Consider going to a preconception appointment to screen for any reproductive health problemsTake the time to do some research about your conditionKeep a consistent schedule for prenatal appointmentsEat a healthy diet and stay active if possibleEstablish a support system with your friends and familyMonitor your mental health and seek out help if needed

Maintaining Your Emotional Wellbeing Receiving a diagnosis of a high-risk pregnancy can cause you to feel anxiety and fear about what’s to come next. You may also feel overwhelmed with the type of additional care needed to prevent any complications. These feelings can cause you to feel stress during pregnancy, but your doctor will work with you to provide reassurance and help you manage your emotions.

Reaching out to friends and family can help you keep a positive mindset about your pregnancy. Your doctor will also have resources readily available to help you care for yourself. There are many support groups both in person and online where you can share your feelings and concerns with other women who have had similar experiences.

Having an outlet for your emotions can help relieve stress and allow you to better enjoy your pregnancy. When reading about your condition online, people often share horror stories about what they have experienced. Sometimes, too much information can drive you made.
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How many ultrasounds do you get in a high-risk pregnancy?

How often will I have ultrasounds with a high-risk pregnancy? – Physicians and Surgeons for Women have an on-site, state-of-the-art ultrasound machine, the Philips EPIQ 7, for the most detailed ultrasound imaging possible. You will have at least two ultrasounds during your early and middle pregnancy, and in the later parts of your high-risk pregnancy, you may have ultrasounds as often as once a week based on your health needs and situation.
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When should I stop working with high-risk pregnancy?

– Even the best plans may change as you near your due date. Your doctor may suggest leaving work early if you experience health complications, like preterm labor. Symptoms of preterm labor include:

abdominal cramping, pain, or pressurewatery, bloody, or other discharge from the vaginaincreased discharge of any kindback pain or achepainful or painless contractions that come regularly or frequently rupture of membranes (also known as your water breaking )

Of course, preterm labor isn’t the only complication you may experience that would impact your ability to work. Beyond actual conditions, you may not be sleeping well or have other physical complaints, like swelling, that make your job uncomfortable. Discuss complications and symptoms with your healthcare provider.
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Does high-risk pregnancy mean bed rest?

What are the reasons for bed rest during pregnancy? – Your healthcare provider may recommend bed rest to decrease your chances of early labor or to help treat a pregnancy condition that could lead to complications for you or the fetus. The most common reasons for bed rest during pregnancy are:

Preeclampsia : A potentially dangerous condition that includes swelling, increased blood pressure and protein in your urine. Vaginal bleeding : Bleeding due to placenta previa (the placenta covers part or all of your cervix) or placental abruption (the placenta detaches from your uterine wall prematurely). Premature labor : Labor that begins before the 37th week of pregnancy. Incompetent cervix : A weak cervix that may open (dilate) prematurely. Cervical effacement : Thinning of your cervix. Expecting multiples : Carrying two or more fetuses. Previous pregnancy complications : Can include fetal loss, stillbirth or premature birth. Intrauterine growth restriction : When the fetus measures small for its age.

Remember, you can ask your healthcare provider for their reasons for prescribing bed rest and ask them to explain their recommendation.
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When does high-risk pregnancy begin?

If you’re 17 years old or younger or 35 years old or older, your pregnancy could generally be considered ‘high-risk.’ Women tend to have a window of time when it’s easier on their body to grow a baby and give birth.
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Does shouting affect baby in womb?

What can I do to reduce my hazardous noise exposure? –

Protect yourself from loud noise:

You should use hearing protection if your job exposes you to loud noise. Too much noise can cause stress. Stress can cause changes in your body that can affect your developing baby. For adults, noise that is 85 decibels (dBA) or more can be hazardous to your hearing. At this noise level, you would have to raise your voice for someone next to you to hear you. Most workplace noise levels are less than 95 dBA. Ask your supervisor what the noise level is where you work.

Protect your developing baby from very loud noise:

Your hearing protection will not fully protect your developing baby’s ears from noise. Noise travels through the body to the womb. A baby’s ears develop by about the 20th week of pregnancy. Babies start responding to sounds around the 24th week. Sounds from outside the mother’s body are lower inside the womb, but not completely silenced. Some experts think that pregnant women should not be routinely around noise louder than 115 dBA. This is roughly as loud as a chainsaw. Avoid areas that are louder than 115 dBA during pregnancy, even if you are wearing hearing protection.

Avoid very low frequency sounds, if possible. Noises that you can feel as a rumble or vibration are very low frequency sounds. These sounds travel through your body easily and can cause changes that could affect your developing baby. Avoid sudden impact or impulse noise loud enough for you to need hearing protection or that startle you. Do not lean up against or put your body in contact with a source of noise or vibration. Sounds are stronger to your developing baby when your belly is closer to the source of the noise. Move as far away from the noise as possible. Ask your employer if you can work in a quieter job during pregnancy. Talk to your doctor about potential hazards at work. Make sure to mention that your job exposes you to loud noise.

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Can stress cause Down syndrome?

Surekha Ramachandran, founder of Down Syndrome Federation of India, was in the city on Tuesday to announce the second international down syndrome conference which would be held in the city from May 31 to June 2 at The Corinthians Club. – (Left to right) Shweta Ranka and Surekha Ramachandran, founder Down Syndrome Federation of India, at hotel Deccan Rendezvous on Tuesday.(HT PHOTO) Hindustan Times, Pune | Jui Dharwadkar, Pune Down syndrome, which arises from a chromosome defect, is likely to have a direct link with the increase in stress levels seen in couples during the time of conception, say Surekha Ramachandran, founder of Down Syndrome Federation of India, who has been studying about the same ever since her daughter was diagnosed with the syndrome, 37 years ago.

  • The federation was established by her to get specialists, parents and doctors under a single roof which could provide the needed guidance and support.
  • Ramachandran was in the city on Tuesday to announce the second international down syndrome conference which would be held in the city from May 31 to June 2 at The Corinthians Club.
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The event will bring together all stakeholders like educators, healthcare professionals and parents to spread awareness about the condition. “We are presently studying whether stress can be directly linked to the down syndrome. Our observations do seem to suggest that stress is a factor which can play a significant role and we are collecting evidence to prove it.

The present statistics show that 1 in 750 children are diagnosed with this condition and 90 per cent of these children are the second child born to the parents,” said Ramachandran. She said that children with Down syndrome should be screened mainly for heart, vision, hearing or stomach-related issues and the diagnosis and screening should be done at an early stage.

“If parents and doctors can ensure early diagnosis and intervention then these children with Down syndrome can lead a close to normal lives, attend school, marry and even to take up jobs. Ramachandran said that many such success stories would be seen during the conference.

  1. Speaking about the syndrome, doctors have said that down syndrome is one of the most common genetic birth disorders which is associated with mild to moderate learning disabilities, developmental delays, characteristic facial features and low muscle tone in early infancy.
  2. Through a series of screenings and tests, Down syndrome can be detected.

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Who comes under high-risk pregnancy?

High risk pregnancy Pregnancy (gestation) is the physiological process of a developing fetus within the maternal body. The term high risk pregnancy is used by health care providers to demarcate a pregnancy in which a mother, her foetus or both are at higher risk of developing complications during pregnancy or child birth than in a normal pregnancy.

Women with high-risk pregnancies should receive care from a special team of health care providers to ensure the best possible outcomes. High risk pregnancy may result because of various conditions which are there either before getting pregnant such as diabetes or high blood pressure, and complications from a previous pregnancy, or conditions during pregnancy or delivery.

In India about 20-30% pregnancies belong to high risk category, which is responsible for 75% of perinatal morbidity and mortality. Early detection and effective management of high risk pregnancy can contribute substantially in reduction of maternal and foetal adverse outcomes.

  • Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matriva Abhiyan is an initiative of Ministry of Health and Family Welfare Government of India to identify high risk pregnancies early and follow them so that they can be referred to health care centers with proper facilities so that women with high risk pregnancies may have healthy pregnancies and deliveries without complications.
  • References

Jaideep KC, Prashant D, Girija A. Prevalence of high risk among pregnant women attending antenatal clinic in rural field practice area of Jawaharlal Nehru Medical College, Belgavi, Karnataka, India. Int J Community Med Public Health 2017;4:1257-9. Accessed from If some conditions are associated with pregnancy than it is listed as high risk pregnancy* such as

  • Severe anemia Hb (haemoglobin) less than 7gm/dl
  • Pregnancy induced hypertension, preeclampsia,
  • Syphilis, HIV positive
  • Gestational diabetes mellitus
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Young primi (less than 20 years), or elderly gravida (more than 35 years)
  • Twin or multiple pregnancy
  • Malpresentation
  • Previous caesarian delivery
  • Low lying placenta, placenta previa
  • Positive bad obstetric history (history of still birth, abortion, congenital malformation, obstructed labor, premature birth etc.)
  • Rh negative
  • Patient with History of any current systemic illness(es)/past history of illness

Following warning signs require immediate visit to the doctor/ health facility

  • Fever >38.5ºC/for more than 24 hours
  • Headache, blurring of vision
  • Generalized swelling of the body and puffiness of face
  • Palpitations, easy fatigability and breathlessness at rest
  • Pain in abdomen
  • Vaginal bleeding / watery discharge
  • Reduced fetal movements

Reference- Though any pregnancy could develop complications during or after pregnancy and child birth, but a pregnancy with high risk factor poses higher than normal risk for the pregnant women and fetus. Some common high risk conditions of pregnancy are: Maternal age: Early childbearing is a risk for both mother and new born.

  1. Advanced maternal age (defined as childbearing in a woman over 35 years of age) is reported to be associated with various pregnancy complications such as risk of stillbirth, foetal growth restriction, an increased risk of caesarean birth, premature birth, birth defects, multiple births, gestational diabetes, high blood pressure, preeclampsia.
  2. Medical conditions that exist before pregnancy, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, sexually transmitted diseases or being HIV positive, kidney diseases, autoimmune diseases, thyroid diseases can present risks for the mother and/or her unborn baby.
  3. Medical condition that occur during pregnancy may affect pregnancy and outcome such as preeclampsia, gestational diabetes, placenta previa, polyhydramnios and oligohydramnios.

Multiple births. The risk of complications is higher in women carrying more than one fetus (twins and higher-order multiples). Common complications include preeclampsia, premature labor, and preterm birth. Obesity. Being obese before pregnancy is associated with a number of risks for poor pregnancy outcomes.

  • Zika infection : Infection with zika just before and during pregnancy is a risk factor for different problems with the brain and nervous system of foetus, pregnancy loss and stillbirth.
  • References-
  • )

Management of high-risk pregnancy depends on the woman’s specific risk factors. In a high-risk pregnancy, healthcare providers keep a close watch on the woman and the pregnancy to detect any potential problems as quickly as possible so that treatment can start before the woman’s or fetus’s health is in danger. Following conditions are listed to level as high risk pregnancy*

  • Severe anemia Hb less than 7gm/dl
  • Pregnancy induced hypertension, preeclampsia,
  • Syphilis, HIV positive
  • Gestational diabetes mellitus
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Young primi (less than 20 years), or elderly gravida (more than 35 years)
  • Twin or multiple pregnancy
  • Malpresentation,
  • previous caesarian delivery
  • Low lying placenta, precenta prevoia
  • Positive bad obstetric history (history of still birth, birth, abortion, congenital malformation, obstructed labor, premature birth etc.)
  • Rh negative
  • Patient with History of any current systemic illness(es)/past history of illness

Following warning signs require immediate visit to the doctor/ health facility

  • Fever >38.5ºC/for more than 24 hours
  • Headache, blurring of vision
  • Generalized swelling of the body and puffiness of face
  • Palpitations, easy fatigability and breathlessness at rest
  • Pain in abdomen
  • Vaginal bleeding / watery discharge
  • Reduced fetal movements

Under PMSMA, high risk cases get additional counseling on ‘where to go for regular checkup and institutional delivery, whom to contact during emergency’, and the contact details for assured transport. All high risk cases should be advised to visit the health facility near term in order to plan her delivery.

  1. References-
  2. *

High risk pregnancy can not be always prevented. Staying healthy before and during pregnancy is a way to reduce the chances of high risk pregnancy,

  • Intake of folic acid before and during pregnancy, eating a healthy diet and maintaining proper weight, getting regular physical activity, avoiding tobacco, alcohol and substance abuse are some important factors that should be followed.
  • If there is any medical condition it is important to consult the health care provider before getting pregnant.
  • Women with high-risk pregnancies should receive care from a special team of health care providers to ensure the best possible outcomes.

The treatment guidelines for various high risk factors of pregnancy that have been prepared by the MoHFW in consultation with the technical experts are available on the NHM website*. These guidelines aim to standardize and ensure quality of care across all health facilities in the country, within the framework of the National Health Mission.

  1. References-
  2. *
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: High risk pregnancy
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What is high risk ultrasound?

A high-risk ultrasound is generally performed between 20 to 30 weeks into the pregnancy and is reviewed by a Perinatologist who is equipped with better equipment than what is utilized during a standard ultrasound.
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What puts you at risk for C-section?

Series Cesarean Section (C-Section) While a cesarean section may not be part of your birth plan, your doctor may recommend one for a variety of reasons. You might need to plan a C-section if you’re pregnant with two or more babies or if you have a medical condition or infection.

Your labor isn’t progressing as it should.Your baby is in a bad position or too large for a vaginal birth.Your health – or you baby’s – is at risk.

But there are still risks to both you and your baby with a C-section delivery.
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