Childbirth after 40
It is quite common now for women over the age of forty to have children with or without the help of science.
We need to clarify an issue. The woman’s body will either be ready to conceive, so she can go through the pregnancy on her own without any particular problems or she will not be ready for the pregnancy (the age will be quite advanced) where the conception will become very difficult and in many cases impossible.
So, when we see a pregnant woman who is over 35 years old or even over 40 years old, it is normal to conclude that the body is able to carry out this pregnancy.
We will refer to pregnancies, in which conception is normal but the pregnant woman is older. We will not refer to pregnancies in which the woman has conceived while she was menopausal. It is a special chapter and needs special supportive hormonal treatment.
A woman who is older and gets pregnant makes almost no difference from a younger woman. However, due to advanced age, various diseases, which have nothing to do with pregnancy, may develop.
Thus, she may develop diabetes, some gallstones or kidney stones or even a tumor. These conditions can certainly occur at a younger age, but the older they are the more likely they are to exist.
So, a woman who gets pregnant at an older age may face various other conditions along with pregnancy, such as those mentioned above, as well as others such as heart disease, varicose veins, neurological and hematological syndromes, herpes, ulcers, breast disease.
The gynecologist closely monitors the pregnant woman, who is at a somewhat advanced age. He/she performs regular blood tests, in an attempt to better control the woman. The initial check-up in pregnancy involves much more than the regular check-up on a young pregnant woman.
Also, they obtain a very detailed history.
In the subsequent follow-up of the pregnancy, the gynecologist performs regular ultrasounds as well as other tests with which he tries to diagnose a syndrome of the child, which may be caused of the age of the mother, such as Down syndrome, spina bifida etc.
Amniocentesis is a test performed mostly on women over the age of 35, in which the doctor takes amniotic fluid from the inner cavity of the uterus and then he examines it cytologically to find some of the syndromes mentioned above.
In addition to the possibility of congenital anomalies in the fetus, the gynecologist will perform regular vaginal cultures to keep the vagina clean, as well as regular ultrasounds to check the vitality and physical integrity of the fetus.
The gynecologist may also adopt some special tests, which are often necessary when the pregnant woman is in advanced age.
The doctor should take particular care during childbirth, as the pregnant woman has less endurance to complete the labor, as well as more chances of having a complication, such as uterine inactivity (especially if the woman gives birth for the first time) etc.
There should be close monitoring of labor after childbirth, because the chances of developing psychological and physical syndromes are increased. If there were any diseases before pregnancy and during it, which the doctor monitored, he should retest them.
The expectant mother who is at an advanced age should pay special attention on her diet, as well as be in good physical and psychological health, so that she can get pregnant in the best possible conditions.