High-Risk Does Not Have to Mean High-Worry
What makes a pregnancy high-risk? There are many issues both with the mother’s condition before or during pregnancy and with the baby that may increase the risk of a pregnancy. Most can be managed with additional surveillance and treatment during the pregnancy. Most high-risk pregnancies lead to healthy mothers and babies. Our providers have years of expertise in managing high-risk pregnancies and they have multiple resources to access further expertise (Maternal Fetal Medicine specialists) when needed. Here are the most common conditions and factors:
- Mother’s age is 35 or older
- Obesity – body mass index (BMI) of 30 or more BMI calculator
- Anemia, diabetes, epilepsy, high blood pressure, infection or mental condition
- Problems with the uterus, cervix or placenta
- Severe morning sickness beyond the first trimester
- Abnormal amount of amniotic fluid
- Slow fetal growth
- Mother’s blood is Rh negative and baby's blood is Rh positive
- Previous C-section, low birth weight or preterm birth before 37 weeks
- Fetal genetic conditions
- Previous miscarriage or loss of a baby shortly after birth
- Drinking, drug use and smoking
- Pregnancy that lasts beyond due date
- Twins or other multiple births
If you have been told that your pregnancy is high-risk, do not be alarmed. It simply means that we will monitor your pregnancy more closely. Your chances are extremely high that you will deliver a healthy baby, as long as you are monitored closely during pregnancy.
Very occasionally our providers may assess your risks and recommend you receive care and deliver your baby at a tertiary care center (eg. Johns Hopkins Medicine [downtown] or University of Maryland). One circumstance in which that would occur is if your BMI (at the start of pregnancy) is 45 or more. This presents unique risks that our practice and delivery facility are not equipped for. You can calculate you BMI using the calculator above.
If you have questions about high-risk pregnancy, call Capital Women’s Care Howard County at 410-531-7557 or use our convenient online Request an Appointment form. Our high-risk pregnant patients come to us from Ellicott City, Fulton, Laurel, Maple Lawn, Columbia in Howard County, Maryland and bordering communities.