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Curr Opin Obstet Gynecol. 2007 Apr;19(2):110-2.

Increased risk in the elderly parturient.

Author information

  • 1Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Lund University, Malmö University Hospital, Malmö, Sweden. sven.montan@skane.se

Abstract

PURPOSE OF REVIEW:

The steady increase in age in primiparous and multiparous women raises questions concerning increased obstetric risk and outcome in such pregnancies. This review highlights the effects of maternal age on obstetric and perinatal outcome.

RECENT FINDINGS:

Complications have been associated with increasing maternal age, including abnormal weight gain, obesity, gestational diabetes, chronic and pregnancy-induced hypertension, antepartum haemorrhage, placenta praevia, multiple gestation, prelabour rupture of membranes, and preterm labour. Intrapartum complications of malpresentation, fetopelvic disproportion, abnormal labour, increased use of oxytocin in labour, caesarean section, instrumental delivery, sphincter rupture, and postpartum haemorrhage are more frequent in older women. Advanced maternal age is associated with a higher risk of stillbirth throughout gestation, and the peak risk period is 37-41 weeks. Perinatal outcomes differ with maternal age concerning gestational age, birth weight, prematurity, low birth weight, incidence of small-for-gestational-age infants, fetal distress, and perinatal morbidity and mortality. The increased risk cannot be explained only by intercurrent illness or pregnancy complications.

SUMMARY:

Increasing maternal age is independently associated with specific adverse outcomes. Increasing age is a continuum rather than threshold effect. More information about obstetric consequences of delayed childbearing is needed both for obstetricians and fertile women.

PMID:
17353677
DOI:
10.1097/GCO.0b013e3280825603
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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