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High risk pregnancy

Maternal pregnancy complications

What is a high risk pregnancy?

A high risk pregnancy requires special follow-up care. Complications of a pregnancy can be related to:

  • A maternal health problem (before or during pregnancy)
  • A fetal health problem.

For example, a woman who has heart problems before getting pregnant needs more supervision during pregnancy.

The mother may also have complications during pregnancy, such as pregnancy diabetes or high blood pressure.

Finally, abnormalities of the fetus, detected in ultrasound and nuchal translucency, are also complications that require closer monitoring.

What is the Fetal-Maternal Medicine Clinic?

Fetal-maternal medicine offers an array of services to monitor pregnancies that present complications for the mother, the baby, or both.

The interdisciplinary teams that work here include specialists in fetal-maternal medicine and internal medicine, nurse clinicians, psychologists, nutritionists, pharmacists, etc.

Among the clinics in this group are ultraspecialized clinics for maternal heart disease, HIV and other infections, slow fetal growth, multiple pregnancies, and many others that you might need to consult. There is also the Integrated Multidisciplinary Prenatal Diagnosis Centre [Centre intégré de diagnostic prénatal multidisciplinaire (CIDP)].

Interventions on the fetus can be performed, including surgeries to treat deformities or laser therapies to correct problems that can affect twins like twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome.

CHU Sainte-Justine is home to the largest fetal-maternal medical service in Canada. It is a member of the North American Fetal Therapy Network (NAFTN), which is made up of three Canadian centres and a dozen American hospitals specialized in fetal therapy.

Symptoms to monitor

Different symptoms should be monitored depending on the problem identified. You can find more details on each of the issues presented in the various links on this page.

Tests and procedures

In order to properly identify the causes of a problem and to choose the appropriate treatments, different tests can be performed such as blood tests, ultrasounds, amniocentesis, etc.

Page by

Dre Lucie Morin

About this page
Updated on 1/25/2021
Created on 12/18/2017
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