High-Risk Pregnancy

During a high-risk pregnancy, women receive specialized care and attention

A high-risk pregnancy is a pregnancy that may threaten the mother and/or baby’s health. When a woman hears the words “high-risk pregnancy,” of course, she feels worried, but she can rest assured that she will receive expert care from our experienced Austin obgyns.

High-risk pregnancy factors

Several different factors put a woman at risk for a high-risk pregnancy, including a woman’s age, health history and certain complications that may arise without warning.

When a teen or a woman older than age 35 is pregnant, her age is a high-risk pregnancy factor. Teenagers have a higher risk of developing anemia, high blood pressure and pre-term labor. Older mothers have an increased risk for complications during delivery; prolonged labor or labor that fails to progress; C-sections; and having infants with certain genetic disorders such as Down syndrome.

When a woman with existing medical conditions becomes pregnant, her condition can be a factor for high-risk pregnancy.

  • High blood pressure
  • Obesity
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome, or PCOS
  • Thyroid disease
  • Kidney disease
  • Diabetes
  • Autoimmune conditions, such as multiple sclerosis or lupus
  • HIV/AIDS

Pregnancy complications

Sometimes, women develop complications during pregnancy that cause the pregnancy to be considered high risk. A multiple pregnancy is always considered a high-risk pregnancy due to the risk for preterm birth and other factors. Our Austin obgyns are very experienced at monitoring and handling multiple pregnancies, labor and delivery. There are several other pregnancy complications that may develop.

  • Gestational diabetes
  • Preeclampsia
  • Eclampsia
  • Problems with amniotic fluid

Lifestyle factors that can cause high-risk pregnancy are largely preventable, and our Austin obgyns will offer support and counsel to curb dangerous habits.

  • Smoking
  • Using illegal drugs, substances
  • Drinking alcohol

Steps to take for a healthy pregnancy

A high-risk pregnancy cannot always be prevented, but there are steps women can take to have the healthiest pregnancy possible. Women who are considering pregnancy should consider making a preconception planning appointment with our Austin obgyns. If a woman is already pregnant, she should schedule her first prenatal visit as soon as she learns she is pregnant. This is a very important visit that includes important tests and information every woman should know about how to have a healthy pregnancy.

As soon as a woman begins to consider pregnancy, or as soon as she knows she is pregnant, she should change her lifestyle to avoid a high-risk pregnancy. Healthy habits necessary for a healthy pregnancy include: eliminating alcohol, smoking and the use of any illegal drugs or substances, taking a daily prenatal vitamin and maintaining a healthy weight.

Our Austin obgyns carefully monitor and treat high-risk pregnancy patients

Our Austin obgyns and staff care for high-risk pregnancy patients with compassion and careful attention. A woman with a high-risk pregnancy will need to see us more often and may require additional testing during the pregnancy, but our goal remains the same – a healthy, happy mother and baby. Contact us for an appointment.