What does a low or high risk pregnancy mean? Why is it important?

Low risk refers to a pregnancy that is anticipated to be problem free. This assessment is based on a woman''s past medical history, past gynaecological/obstetric history and any other relevant issues as the pregnancy continues. A high risk pregnancy refers to a pregnancy which is thought from the outset to be more at risk of complications before, at or after the delivery. The reason you need to be aware whether you are low risk or high risk is that this assessment will decide the type of care that is most appropriate for you. Low risk pregnancies may be cared for in the main by midwives and family doctors; high risk pregnancies may require Consultant care with regular visits to the Hospital. An initially low risk pregnancy may become a high risk one at any time, for example if your baby turns out to be breech then hospital care would be advisable due to the much higher risk of requiring Caesarean delivery. There is, however, no perfect way to determine level of risk.
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