Medical Q&As

Beyond term - dangerous for baby?

My pregnant daughter is two weeks past her delivery time. Is this dangerous for the baby?

The expected date of delivery that is given to an expectant mother is an approximate date. If the delivery date has been predicted on the basis of the date of the first day of the motherís last menstrual period then the baby could come either two weeks before the predicted date or two weeks after the predicted date. If the date was based on an ultrasound scan then the calculation is generally more precise and accurate. Two weeks after the expected date of delivery is coming close to the point where labour would be induced if the mother had not commenced labour spontaneously. Presumably your daughterís pregnancy has proceeded normally up to now and the monitoring of the babyís progress has indicated that all is well. In that case it is reasonable to allow the pregnancy to proceed without interference. The key consideration here is that the placenta begins to deteriorate as a pregnancy proceeds beyond term in which case the baby might not obtain an optimal level of nutrition and oxygen. Hence the usual practice of inducing delivery once the pregnancy has extended a couple of weeks beyond the predicted date of delivery. In summary, it is safe to allow a pregnancy to proceed beyond term once the monitoring signs are satisfactory.