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Finding out you are pregnant is often considered one of the most exciting moments of life. However, finding out you’re a high-risk pregnancy can be worrisome. Don’t assume that just because you are labeled “high risk,” that your pregnancy is destined for difficulties or bad news. However, you’ll need to be prepared that some extra attention and awareness will be needed over the next nine months.
What is a High Risk Pregnancy?
High risk pregnancies are considered those that have a greater chance of complications. These complications can include issues that compromise the health of the baby and/or mother. Premature birth and birth defects are common concerns in women who are deemed high risk. Having an experienced obstetrician who specializes in high risk pregnancies is critical to ensure you get the extra prenatal care and monitoring you need to avoid serious complications for yourself or your baby.
Factors That Can Qualify a Pregnancy to Be High Risk
There is a wide range of factors that can determine whether a woman will be a high-risk pregnancy or not, some of which you can control and others that you cannot. Primary risk factors include those associated with your past or present pregnancy, such as the following:
Previous pregnancy complications
Multiple births (twins, triplets, etc)
Breech vaginal birth
Vaginal birth after cesarean section (VBAC)
There are also medical conditions that can be associated with high risk pregnancies, especially when they are not treated or well-managed:
Blood disorders (e.g. sickle cell disease)
Lupus or other autoimmune disorders
Advanced mature age (women who are age 35 or older)
Diabetes (both type 1 and type 2)
Finally, the following lifestyle habits are risk factors that can be changed to reduce your risk of birth defects or premature birth:
Illicit drug use
Prenatal Care for High Risk Pregnancy
At North Pointe OB/GYN, we understand how to keep you and your baby healthy during a high risk pregnancy. You may require more frequent prenatal checkups or ultrasounds so that we can catch and treat complications early if they do arise. Our Cumming clinic is fully equipped to care for high risk pregnancies of all types.
Please schedule your consult with one of our talented obstetricians if you are concerned that your pregnancy is or will be considered high risk. We are happy to explain your prenatal care in detail and recommend any necessary changes in lifestyle or medical treatment that will foster a healthy, stress-free delivery.
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