NEWSFLASH: Pregnancy can KILL! & Pregnancy related death is on the RISE! NO need for Planned Parenthood tho …GRR
A Republican congressman’s claim that advances in science and technology mean pregnancy no longer threatens a woman’s life and health doesn’t stand up to scientific scrutiny.
In fact, conditions ranging from ectopic pregnancy, in which an embryo implants outside the uterus, to preeclampsia, which causes skyrocketing blood pressure and can lead to strokes and seizures, can and do threaten the lives of pregnant women. Preeclampsia and gestational high blood pressure occur in about 6 percent to 8 percent of U.S. pregnancies, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
While those conditions are common, many individual cases have complications as well, said Alison Cahill, a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.
“As a high-risk obstetrician, I see many women, in addition to those things, who have pre-existing conditions, so other illness or medical problems that then make their pregnancy high-risk,” Cahill told LiveScience.
Statistics tell a different story. In fact, though pregnancy-related deaths fell dramatically in the 20th century, they have been on the rise since 1987, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. There were 7.2 deaths per 100,000 live births in 1987. By 2003, that number had risen to 14.5 deaths per 100,000 live births. [6 Politicians Who Got the Science Wrong]
Better recordkeeping may account for some of the rise, according to the CDC, but an increase in chronic conditions such as hypertension, diabetes and obesity may also explain the increased risk of complications.
And despite Walsh’s comments, pregnancy complications can’t always be solved by modern technology. Ectopic pregnancy, for example, affects 19.7 out of every 1,000 North American pregnancies, according to a paper published in February 2000 in the journal American Family Physician. In these cases, embryos almost always implant in the fallopian tubes, the connection between the ovaries and the uterus. The fallopian tubes aren’t capable of supporting a pregnancy; a growing embryo will rupture them, which can cause uncontrollable bleeding. There is no technology available to save these pregnancies.