Advanced maternal age and pregnancy outcome
Keywords:Maternal Age, Pregnancy, Obstetric Outcome
Background: Advanced maternal age is considered relatively more hazardous from both the maternal and fetal perspectives. In our society today, increasing numbers of women are delaying childbearing into their thirties and early forties, making the consequence of older maternal age an important public health concern.
Objective: To assess the effect of Advanced maternal age on pregnancy outcome. Patients and Methods: This was a comparative study of pregnancy outcome in 250 women aged 35 years or more, and an equal number of women aged 20-29 years, at the Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital, Kano, Nigeria, a modern health care delivery centre, between January 2003 and December 2005. They all booked before 20 weeks of gestation, and were followed up until the end of the puerperium. The outcome measures were obstetric complications, maternal medical complications, mode of delivery and fetomaternal outcome.
Results: There was no statistically significant difference in the mean parity and mean birth weight between the two groups. There was higher occurrence of obstetric and medical complications and caesarean delivery in the study group compared to the control group. The overall pregnancy outcome did not show significant difference between the two groups.
Conclusion and Recommendations: Despite higher occurrence of obstetric and medical complications among the older women, the overall pregnancy outcome did not show significant difference between the younger and the older women. Older women that are managed and delivered by modern obstetric care facilities should expect similar pregnancy outcomes to that of the younger women.