Surprises that some mothers and their babies face along the way are factors that put their lives at risk. While a mother can do her very best to have a healthy pregnancy and attend regular doctor’s appointments, some issues can occur suddenly and cannot be prevented. Rest assured that Susquehanna Health has a plan of action for women of high risk. An individualized approach that includes procedures like nonstress tests and neurologic tests will ensure that baby and mother stay safe and healthy over the 40-week span.
Expectant mothers should inform their doctors from the start if they have an existing medical condition, as it can create complications for mother and baby later. Some conditions can create obstacles during pregnancy, such as:
- Sickle cell anemia
- Thyroid disease
- High blood pressure
Pregnancy Risks and Age
A long-studied topic in pregnancy research, maternal age increases the chances of pregnancy complications, chromosome abnormalities and miscarriage. At age 25, a woman’s chance of having a child who has been affected by Down syndrome is 1 in 1,250 and by the time they hit 40, their chance grows significantly higher to about 1 in 100.
Prenatal testing is available at Susquehanna Health to help diagnose and recognize chromosomal abnormalities and genetic birth defect chances. While most miscarriages can be attributed to a chromosomal abnormality, some studies show that older mothers have an increased chance at miscarriage in the first trimester. Talk to your doctor to learn more about the risks.