High-Risk Pregnancy Conditions

High-Risk Pregnancy Conditions

Problems that may put you at high risk may occur before or during pregnancy.  Fortunately, the pregnancy may continue in a healthy way, if problems are diagnosed early. This text explains the most three high-risk pregnancy conditions and their treatment options, as well.

  • Gestational Diabetes

Gestational diabetes is a serious problem that is seen at three and five percent of pregnant women. This type of diabetes may cause serious problems such as macrosomia, shoulder dystocia (birth trauma), respiratory distress in a newborn, hypoglycemia and low calcium level in a newborn baby, jaundice, premature birth, intra-uterine fetal death (pregnant women who are not able to control their blood glucose levels through diet), Type 1 diabetes, and obesity. Pregnant women also face these following risks in gestational diabetes: miscarriage, preeclampsia, infections, hard labor (difficult births), vacuum or c-section delivery, postpartum hemorrhage, diabetes in pregnancy, metabolic syndrome, etc.

How is gestational diabetes treated?

A diabetic diet, exercise, and insulin therapy are recommended as a treatment of gestational diabetes.

  • Diabetes Before Pregnancy

Diabetes before pregnancy may increase the risk of many serious health problems such as miscarriage, premature death, birth defect, intra-uterine fetal death, polyhydramnios (excessive amniotic fluid), respiratory distress in a newborn, hypoglycemia and low calcium level in a newborn baby, hyperbilirubinemia in the newborn (high bilirubin levels), jaundice, cardiomegaly (enlarged heart), diabetes in babies, and intrauterine growth retardation. This disease also threatens the health of the mother. Diabetic nephropathy and eye diseases, diabetic neuropathy, preeclampsia, and infections are the most common problems seen in pregnant women.

How is pre-existing diabetes treated?

In order not to risk the health of both the baby and the mother, pregnant women should consult a gynecologist and an endocrinologist before pregnancy.  Proper treatment and controlling blood glucose before pregnancy may help have a healthy pregnancy.

  • Preeclampsia

Preeclampsia occurs when there is a protein increase in the urine and blood pressure is greater than 140/90 mmHg. Preeclampsia is seen at six and eight percent of pregnant women. This disease threatens the mother’s health and causes a brain hemorrhage, brain injury, pulmonary edema, kidney failure, heart failure, liver failure, and even death. Unfortunately, it also affects the babies’ health and causes premature birth, intrauterine growth retardation, and intra-uterine fetal death.

How is preeclampsia treated?

Doctors recommend pregnant women to rest in the case of mild preeclampsia.  If the symptoms develop after the 37th week of gestation and affect the baby’s health negatively, doctors need to start labor (if the cervix is ready for the labor). If pregnant women face severe preeclampsia and those are above 34th week of gestation, the delivery is performed.  If pregnant women are below the 34th week of gestation, the delivery is performed in cases of severe asymptomatic hypertension, eclampsia, impaired liver and kidney functions, stomach cramps, headaches, and vision problems.

Medical Care for Healthy Pregnancy

It is important to know that some tests during pregnancy have vital and a detailed fetal ultrasonographic examination performed at the 18th – 23rd weeks of gestation may evaluate the external and internal anatomy of the baby and may detect a significant part of congenital anomalies at birth.

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