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What Causes a Pregnancy to Become High-Risk?

Pregnancies are considered high-risk when your baby or you have an increased risk for health complications during gestation or delivery than average. There are many situations that elevate your condition to high-risk, including:

  • Medical and family history (health conditions or family history of pregnancy complications)
  • Multiples (twins, triplets, etc.)
  • Previous pregnancies and complications
  • Age (if you are under 17 or over 35)
  • Lifestyle factors such as smoking, drinking, or drug use

Your obstetrician will discuss the possibility of a high-risk pregnancy with you by reviewing your family and medical history at your first obstetric appointment. This helps you and our team better understand what potential health conditions you or your baby may develop during gestation and how to handle them.

Diagnosing High-Risk Pregnancies

Like routine pregnancies, prenatal care is essential for high-risk pregnancies and when they are most often diagnosed. Sometimes, based on your health history, your provider may let you know that yours will be high-risk.

When you meet with your obstetrician, let them know how you feel physically and emotionally. Gestation can come with many new symptoms, but if you experience any of the following, let your doctor know:

  • Heart palpitations or chest pain
  • Nausea and vomiting that is worse than morning sickness
  • Abdominal pain that doesn’t go away
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Dizziness/fainting
  • Headache that doesn’t go away

Your provider may recommend additional tests to monitor you and your baby or find a reason for the symptoms you’re experiencing. Urine and blood tests check for genetic conditions or disabilities that may develop in the fetus, while ultrasounds can monitor the fetus’s and placenta’s development.

High-Risk Pregnancies Require Extra Care and Attention

When your pregnancy is high-risk, your obstetrician will monitor you and your baby more frequently. The level of care you require will depend on your specific conditions and needs throughout your pregnancy.

Our providers work with maternal-fetal medicine specialists who are experts in high-risk pregnancies. This collaboration will help us recommend the right medications or procedures for you and your baby.

Like other pregnancies, your provider will help you create a birth plan. Your birth plan and recovery plan will take into consideration your high-risk conditions and the best way to keep you and your baby safe. Part of that plan may be scheduling a specific time to induce labor or a cesarean (c-) section.

Get High-Risk Pregnancy Care At Genesis OBGYN

If you suspect your pregnancy may be high-risk or you know that your next one will be, your provider at Genesis OBGYN is here for you. Contact us to schedule an appointment today.