Research into pregnancy helps to better understand the causes of pregnancy disorders which compromise the health of mothers and their babies. Many of these women have pregnancies troubled by complications such as miscarriage, pre-eclampsia, fetal growth restriction, gestational diabetes and preterm labour.

These common pregnancy complications create significant emotional, social and economic costs within our community. Any decline in the incidence or severity of these pregnancy complications significantly reduces these costs. The principal beneficiaries from these research outcomes are mothers and their babies.

Ageing & Pregnancy

Though most older mums have a healthy pregnancy and birth, you do have an increased risk of developing ongoing health conditions, such as diabetes and high blood pressure. These conditions can affect your health, and how well your pregnancy and birth goes.

Air Pollutants & Pregnancy

Pregnant women who are exposed to levels of air pollution may be more likely to give birth to children with potential mental or physical conditions.

The researchers found that the pregnant women in the study who lived in the most-polluted areas were up to two times more likely to have a child with a spectrum disorder, compared with those who lived in the least-polluted areas.

Alcohol & Pregnancy

A woman who drinks alcohol while she is pregnant may harm her developing baby (fetus). Alcohol can pass from the mother’s blood into the baby’s blood. It can damage and affect the growth of the baby’s cells. Brain and spinal cord cells are most likely to have damage. The term fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) describes the range of alcohol effects on a child.

Antibiotics & Pregnancy

When a woman is pregnant, she and her doctor almost always think twice about using any kind of medication during pregnancy. But sometimes a medical condition requires the use of antibiotics, which can be a concern, because recent studies have linked some classes of antibiotics to birth defects.

Baby Development & Pregnancy

Many pre-existing diseases that affect the health of the mother and the development of her baby can complicate pregnancy such as preterm delivery, stillbirth and growth restriction. These outcomes can be reduced if managed effectively during pregnancy.

The research for this can include the examination of how maternal diet and pre-existing diseases affects perinatal outcomes in fetal development.

Chemicals & Pregnancy

Environmental toxins and fetal development is the impact of different toxins from the environment on the development of the fetus. These research articles provide insite to potential adverse effects of environmental toxins on the prenatal development of both the embryo or fetus, as well as pregnancy complications. The human embryo or fetus is relatively susceptible to impact from adverse conditions within the mother’s environment. Sub-par fetal conditions often cause various degrees of developmental delays, both physical and mental, for the growing baby. Although some variables do occur as a result of genetic conditions pertaining to the father, a great many are directly brought about from environmental toxins that the mother is exposed to.

Diseases & Pregnancy

An intercurrent (or concurrent, concomitant or, in most cases, pre-existing) disease in pregnancy is a disease that is not directly caused by the pregnancy (in contrast to a complication of pregnancy), but which may become worse or be a potential risk to the pregnancy (such as causing pregnancy complications). A major component of this risk can result from necessary use of drugs in pregnancy to manage the disease.

Drugs & Pregnancy

Consumption of illegal drugs is not safe for the unborn baby or for the mother. Studies have shown that consumption of illegal drugs during pregnancy can result in miscarriage, low birth weight, premature labor, placental abruption, fetal death, and even maternal death.

Education, Birth Methods & Pregnancy

Childbirth education encourages women and their partners/support persons to know their options and make informed choices during pregnancy, labour and birth.

Genetics & Pregnancy

Genetic research is leading to the development of more genetic tests that can be used for the diagnosis of genetic conditions. Genetic testing is available for infants, children, and adults. Genetic tests can be used to diagnose a disease in an individual with symptoms and to help measure risk of developing a disease. Adults can undergo preconception testing before deciding to become pregnant, and prenatal testing can be performed during a pregnancy. Results of genetic tests can help physicians select appropriate treatments for their patients.

Lifestyle & Pregnancy

Expectant mothers can increase the chances of a good pregnancy outcome by making healthy lifestyle choices during pregnancy, including limiting alcohol consumption and exposure to tobacco and maintaining a healthy diet.

Medical Conditions & Pregnancy

Medical conditions may complicate a pregnancy. However, with proper medical care, most women can enjoy a healthy pregnancy, labour and birth. With research into the technics, medications and intricate understanding of various medical conditions with their effects on pregnancy will help midwives, birth practitioners, medical practitioners as well as expecting parents prepare and better understand possible complication causes.

Microbiome & Pregnancy

The human microbiome is the population of more than 100 trillion microorganisms that live in our gut, mouth, skin and elsewhere in our bodies. These microbial communities have numerous beneficial functions relevant to supporting life. They are needed to digest food, to prevent disease-causing bacteria from invading the body, and to synthesize essential nutrients and vitamins. The total number of genes associated with the human microbiome exceeds the total number of human genes by a factor of 100-to-one.

Nutrition & Pregnancy

Pregnant women need to eat a nutritious diet to keep themselves and the developing baby healthy. The need for some nutrients increases during pregnancy, and folic acid and iodine supplements are recommended before and after conception. There is no safe level of alcohol consumption during pregnancy.

Psychology & Pregnancy

Your psychology has a deep, long-lasting effect on your entire body. During pregnancy, depression, anxiety and other psychological conditions in the mother can cause physical changes, including impaired fetal growth, as well as mental effects, such as behavioural problems during childhood.

Smoking & Pregnancy

Smoking while pregnant exposes a woman and her unborn child to an increased risk of health problems including ectopic pregnancy, miscarriage, premature labour, and sudden unexpected death in infancy (SUDI), which includes sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). Passive smoking can also affect a pregnant woman and her unborn child.

Vaccinations & Pregnancy

Some infectious diseases can cause serious harm to a pregnant woman or her unborn baby and immunisation reduces the risk. Vaccines are available against infectious diseases such as chickenpox, influenza, measles, mumps, rubella, pneumococcal disease, hepatitis B and whooping cough (pertussis).


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