Actress Claudia Raia announced this Monday (19) that she is pregnant. The 55-year-old actress is also the mother of Enzo, 25, and Sophia, 19, from her relationship with actor Edson Celulari.
As with the actress, the so-called late motherhood is possible, but it requires frequent medical follow-up and a good quality of life.
A survey of data by the IBGE (Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics) earlier this year showed that Brazilian women are having children later and later.
From 2000 to 2020, the proportion of birth records whose mothers were under 30 years old dropped from 76.1% to 62.1%, the survey showed.
On the other hand, birth records whose mothers were 30 years old or older rose from 24.0% to 37.9%. The lower fertility rate and the trend of late pregnancy indicate a process of demographic transition in Brazil.
Risks of late pregnancy
Although it is possible, according to Decio Teshima, a gynecologist who is a member of the São Paulo Gynecology and Obstetrics Society (Sogesp), the Brazilian Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics Societies (Febrasgo), and the Brazilian Medical College of Acupuncture, “pregnancy over 35 years is defined as a late pregnancy.
There is a greater risk of diseases for the pregnant woman, such as diabetes and preeclampsia, as well as a greater risk of miscarriage.”
The high risk classification is made by the Ministry of Health.
Teshima said that “the average age of menopause in Brazilian women is around 47 to 51 years old, therefore, a pregnancy after 50 years is not physiological”.
“A woman’s body is no longer ready to gestate. The ideal period to get pregnant would be between 20 to 29 years old,” she continued.
THE CNN Mariana Rosario, obstetrician and gynecologist, member of the clinical staff of the Albert Einstein hospital, specializing in late pregnancy explained that an egg from a 50-year-old woman is an egg that was born with her — thus, an older cell has a greater possibility to produce changes in cell division.
However, the doctor that while “the woman is ovulating, theoretically, there is the possibility of receiving a pregnancy”.
The doctor explains that despite this, there are several risks, both for the woman and for the babies.
“It is a pregnancy considered risky because of the many complications it has […] “With chromosomal alterations, mainly in cell division, the doctor is more concerned about malformation and genetic syndromes with babies”, he said.
“It is necessary to pay attention to the morphological tests to know if there is a chance of genetic alteration, you can do a fetal DNA test — to see if there is a chance of malformations, we have to evaluate all the possibilities of any gestational pathology happening to the mother” , said Mariana.
Prenatal care in high-risk pregnancy
The Ministry of Health has a Technical Manual for High-Risk Pregnancy, designed to guide the care team in the diagnosis and treatment of diseases and/or problems that afflict women during pregnancy.
The objective is also to standardize the conduct of care in the Unified Health System (SUS).
The manual indicates that in case of a high-risk pregnancy, the professional team must promote clinical evaluation, obstetric evaluation, mutual repercussions between the clinical conditions of the pregnant woman and the pregnancy and delivery assistance.
According to Teshima, in the case of a pregnancy over 50 years of age, “without a doubt, it is necessary to have a closer monitoring of the pregnant woman and fetal vitality at the end of pregnancy”.
The doctor explains that prenatal care should begin even before the positive test. “Women need to prepare physically and emotionally to give birth. It needs a good lifestyle, good nutrition and proper supplementation,” she said.
“During pregnancy, first, ask for all routine prenatal tests. Second, check whether the pregnancy was spontaneous or by in vitro fertilization (IVF). If it was by IVF, if it was with your own eggs or by egg donation,” said Teshima.
Mariana also highlights that prenatal care is very different from a normal prenatal care.
“Consultations need to be closer, you don’t need to wait four weeks to find the patient, you need to evaluate the whole supplementation part. It actually needs super tracking,” she said.
How to maintain a healthy late pregnancy
Another indication of the Ministry of Health’s technical manual for high-risk pregnancy is care with emotional and psychosocial aspects.
These involve professionals from nursing, psychology, nutrition and social work, in articulated and planned work.
Teshima warns that to maintain a healthy pregnancy for both mother and baby, some specific care is necessary.
“A good diet, regular physical activity, taking care of emotional health and especially avoiding gaining too much weight during pregnancy,” he said.
Mariana said that the patient who plans to have a child over the age of 35. “The follow-up of an older woman’s pregnancy needs to start before getting pregnant, needs a diet adjustment, needs individualized supplementation,” she said.
And to keep the pregnancy healthy, you should continue with the same tips, says the doctor.
“You need an extremely strict diet control, if there is no contraindication, the woman must train the entire pregnancy (with follow-up), ask for specific tests and be careful with genetic tests if there is an indication”, Mariana points out.
Source: CNN Brasil