If you have a high-risk pregnancy, you or your baby might be at increased risk of health problems before, during or after delivery. Typically, special monitoring or care throughout pregnancy is needed. Understand the risk factors for a high-risk pregnancy, and what you can do to take care of yourself and your baby.

What are the risk factors for a high-risk pregnancy?
Sometimes a high-risk pregnancy is the result of a medical condition present before pregnancy. In other cases, a medical condition that develops during pregnancy for either you or your baby causes a pregnancy to become high risk.
Specific factors that might contribute to a high-risk pregnancy include:

What steps can I take to promote a healthy pregnancy?
Whether you know ahead of time that you'll have a high-risk pregnancy or you simply want to do whatever you can to prevent a high-risk pregnancy, stick to the basics. For example:

Do I need special tests?
Depending on the circumstances, your health care provider might recommend:

Some prenatal diagnostic tests — such as amniocentesis and chorionic villus sampling — carry a small risk of pregnancy loss. The decision to pursue these tests is up to you and your partner. Discuss the risks and benefits with your health care provider.
What else do I need to know about high-risk pregnancy?
Talk to your health care provider about how to manage any medical conditions you experience during pregnancy and how your health might affect labor and delivery. Contact your health care provider if you have:

A high-risk pregnancy might have ups and downs. Do your best to stay positive as you take steps to promote a healthy pregnancy.

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