High-Risk Pregnancies

Hearing that you are having a high-risk pregnancy can be extremely distressing and daunting. Most of the time, risk factors can be managed and reduced with early detection and continuous monitoring. With regular prenatal care, you can still have a healthy and happy baby.

Risk factors of a high-risk pregnancy

Dr Tshimanga specialises in the management of obstetric and gynaecological conditions and emergencies - and will ensure the best possible outcome for your high-risk pregnancy.

A pregnancy is considered high risk when there are complications that could negatively affect the mother. Risk factors include

  • Being under the age of 17 or over the age of 35. Being over 35 increases the risk for preeclampsia (pregnancy-related high blood pressure). Miscarriages and genetic defects are also slightly higher when over the age of 40.
  • Pre-existing medical conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, autoimmune disease, and sexually transmitted diseases. These conditions can all negatively affect the baby and delivery if not monitored.
  • Having twins or multiples. Although most multiples are born healthy, having multiples increases the risk of premature labour, gestational diabetes, and pregnancy-induced high blood pressure.
  • Complications such as abnormal placenta position, fetal growth restriction and rhesus (Rh) sensitization.
  • Preeclampsia (also known as pregnancy-related high-blood pressure disorders), which can be dangerous if left untreated.
  • A history of complicated pregnancy or miscarriage. If you’ve had premature labour or a previously complicated pregnancy, you are at higher risk of an early delivery again.
  • Depression or mental illness - depression is associated with low birth weight and preterm labour, as well as making it harder for you to care for your baby.
  • History of tobacco, drug or alcohol abuse.

Signs of a potentially high-risk pregnancy

If you experience any of the following symptoms while pregnant, book an appointment with Dr Tshimanga as soon as possible.

  • Vaginal bleeding
  • Unusual watery discharge
  • Severe migraines
  • Pain in the lower abdomen
  • A reduction in fetal activity
  • Pain or burning sensations while urinating
  • Sudden swelling in the face, hands and fingers
  • Fever and chills
  • Vomiting and continuous nausea
  • Intrusive thoughts about harming yourself or your baby

If you experience any of these symptoms, it’s vital to call Dr Tshimanga’s practice as soon as possible. If after hours, please don’t hesitate to call our emergency service line on 0800 786 000.