17.12.2013

Risks of pregnancy over the age of 40

Women who give birth over the age of 35 reduce the risk of having a congenitally malformed baby by 40 per cent, a study has shown.Researchers from Washington University in St Louis in America studied data taken from the second trimester ultrasound tests of 76,000 women comparing their ages and incidences of malformations. Congenital malformations include spina bifida, cleft palates, club feet, Harelips and Hydrocephalus or water on the brain.
The views expressed in the contents above are those of our users and do not necessarily reflect the views of MailOnline. Women who become pregnant using donated eggs have at least three times the risk of developing serious complications, a major study has found. Almost 18 per cent of women who became pregnant following egg donation suffered high blood pressure, the study found, compared with 5 per cent of other women undergoing fertility treatment. Getting pregnant can be hard at the best of times but when you're over a certain age unfortunately things can get even harder.
Fortunately with the advances in fertility treatments there are plenty of options availble to help you to conceive and start a family. We spoke to Professor Geeta Nargund, Medical Director at Create Health, to find out all you need to know about getting pregnant after 40 so you can be as prepared as you need.
Not to paint a bleak picture but naturally risks are heightened in pregnancies after the age of 40. There are also additional problems for the mother like heart disease or high blood pressure that should be initially checked by your GP before you start to try to conceive. If you’re starting to worry that you’ll stick out like a sore-thumb in the antenatal classes don’t worry - more and more people are delaying motherhood - whatever the reason, the result is the same. But there is no denying that the chances of getting pregnant naturally after the age of 40 significantly drop.
But don’t be disheartened there is a much more positive picture that has only just come into play.The NHS National Guidelines for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) guidelines have just had a recent update from their 2004 requirements of IVF only allowing women up to the age of 39 to have the treatment on the NHS. However, in older women and women with low egg reserve (high FSH or low AMH levels), Natural and Mild IVF can be more successful than conventional IVF.This isn’t just reserved for heterosexual couples success rates are higher in single women and lesbian couples with the use of donor sperm.


Single women and lesbian couples can try insemination with donor sperm as the first option if their fallopian tubes are open as long as their egg reserve is not too low. Conventional IVF with suppression of ovaries is another option but may not be necessary for women over 40 and in fact may lead to unnecessary use of high stimulation and reduced response and quality of eggs. Speak to your health professional or GP as soon as possible and they will advise you on the best course of action. Most women who are at the age of 40 or older are focusing on their daily duties as full-time moms.
If you are planning to be pregnant at the age of 40 and up, chances are you already have an idea how to go about delivering a healthy pregnancy. Indeed, being pregnant (interesting to know is that the Danish term is Gravid) at 40 is something that women should not be afraid of. It can be tempting to think the more products you buy and regimens you follow the better your skin will be. One theory is that a defective foetus is less likely to survive the early stages of pregnancy if the woman is older, the Sunday Times reported. In fact the Guardian reported that the number of births to over 40s has increased by 15% in the past five years alone. A woman’s egg supply is naturally going to decrease as she ages and with the eggs that remain there is a heightened chance of chromosomal problems like Down's Syndrome, birth defects and miscarriage.
As well as this if you smoke, stop smoking and if you drink then reduce your alcohol intake.
It is during this age when their priorities change and contentment builds around the idea of fulfilling the needs of their kids. Even if you are a first timer, you already have enough discipline to undergo a worry-free pregnancy by taking enough rest, eating a balanced diet and visiting the doctor on a regular basis. You will be given enough support by your husband and your older kids as the whole family prepares to welcome another member of the household.


Research shows that rate of miscarriage and premature birth is increased by 25 per cent in pregnant women over 40. There may be some unavoidable circumstances that may happen therefore it would be best to pray hard and be guided with the rules of a healthy pregnancy to ensure a safe and normal delivery. There are also some who opt to help their husbands in providing for the family by building their own career or engaging themselves in home businesses.
At this age, you are also most likely financially and emotionally stable, therefore the focus should stick on finding ways for you to have a normal and safe delivery. On one way or another, you already know how the drill goes as you have been a responsible parent for all these years. This is the reason why it is very important to have frequent visits to your doctor to ensure that you and your baby are always in good shape. Again, make sure to take the advice of the doctor as you will surely be given tips on how to plan a healthy diet during your pregnancy. But then again, there are also a number of women who would like to still get pregnant after 40.
To accomplish this, your doctor will most likely order more sonograms and examinations to monitor your overall condition.
For as long as you are armed with the right knowledge on how to go about delivering a safe pregnancy, then everything will turn out fine. Though there may be some risks involved, still it should not stop women from celebrating pregnancy and motherhood.



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