The risk of stillbirth is high among pregnant women who are over 40 years of age with a new study suggesting that their labor should be induced artificially.
The study was conducted by researchers at University College London Hospital who found that the placenta in pregnant women over 40 years of age starts to fall after 42 weeks which could lead to lack of oxygen, resulting in stillbirth.
AdvertisementThe researchers found that the average rate of stillbirth among women in their 40s was one in 132 births compared to one in 217 births among women in their 20s.
"It is justifiable for experts to conclude that inducing labour at an earlier stage of gestation (39-40 weeks) in older mothers (40+ years) could prevent late stillbirth and any maternal risks of an ongoing pregnancy, without increasing the number of operative vaginal deliveries or emergency caesarean sections", lead researcher Dr Anna Kenyon said.
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