A pregnancy is considered high-risk when there are potential complications that could affect the mother, the baby, or both. High Risk Pregnancy require management by a specialist to help ensure the best outcome for the mother and baby. Some pregnancies become high risk as they progress, while some women are at increased risk for complications even before they get pregnant for a variety of reasons.

High-risk complications occur in only 6 percent to 8 percent of all pregnancies.

A pregnancy may be considered high-risk for a variety of reasons. Some of these include:

  • The mother has medical conditions that began before pregnancy, such as diabetes
  • The mother develops a medical condition during pregnancy, such as preeclampsia
  • The mother experienced problems in a previous pregnancy, such as miscarriage
  • Problems are detected in the developing baby
  • Complications occur during pregnancy, such as premature labour
  • The mother is pregnant with multiples (twins or more)
  • Young (<17 years) or old maternal age (>35 years)
  • Placenta praevia
  • Hyperemesis gravidarum
  • Polyhydramnios/oligohydramnios

Routine antenatal checks and monitoring of the baby’s and the mother’s vitals throughout pregnancy is needed to ensure successful outcomes. Early and regular prenatal care helps many women have healthy pregnancies and deliveries without complications.