High-risk pregnancies

If you have a high-risk pregnancy, Emory Healthcare’s maternal-fetal medicine team has the experience and knowledge to give you and your baby the best chance for a healthy pregnancy and birth.

What is a high-risk pregnancy?

Your pregnancy may be considered high-risk because of:

  • Your medical history, including conditions like diabetes, heart disease and high blood pressure
  • Difficulties in a prior pregnancy
  • Pregnancy with more than one baby

Complications for the unborn baby, including:

  • Intrauterine growth failure
  • Fetal abnormalities
  • Genetic problems
  • Congenital malformations

Our team will monitor you closely to ensure the health of you and your baby.

Maternal-fetal medicine team

Our maternal-fetal medicine team is highly trained in the diagnosis and treatment of high-risk pregnancy conditions. The team manages your care in collaboration with your primary care obstetric team, offering information about the most current approaches and techniques to diagnose and treat complicated pregnancies.

Maternal-fetal medicine locations

Established more than 25 years ago, the maternal-fetal medicine division at Emory was one of the first specialty units in the country. Today the division provides services at:

  • Emory Perinatal Center at Emory University Hospital Midtown
  • Emory Regional Perinatal Center at Grady Health System, which is one of six regional high-risk infant care centers in the state

Maternal-fetal medicine services

Our services include:

  • Pre-conception counseling and genetic counseling for women with medical problems that could affect pregnancy
  • Management of pregnancy complicated by conditions such as diabetes, gastrointestinal issues, cardio-pulmonary conditions or infectious diseases
  • State-of-the-art ultrasound examinations, including 3D and 4D
  • First and second trimester diagnosis of fetal chromosomal problems using cell-free fetal DNA, CVS and amniocentesis
  • Diagnosis and treatment of fetal or placental anomalies
  • Management of multiple pregnancies, e.g. twins and triplets
  • Management of pregnancies in women of advanced maternal age (women older than 35)
  • Some prenatal interventions, such as utero surgery (performed on the fetus of a pregnant woman)
  • Neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) [link to new NICU page] for high-risk newborns

Listeriosis and pregnancy

You may have heard that eating certain foods can be dangerous to your pregnancy. Listeriosis is a common food-borne concern for pregnant women. It is an infection obtained from bacteria in some foods that can cause premature delivery, miscarriage, and severe illness of the newborn or pregnant woman.

Here are some guidelines recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for avoiding this infection:

  • Listeria is essentially food poisoning and may cause flu-like symptoms: sudden onset of fever, chills, muscle aches, diarrhea or upset stomach, and sometimes headache, stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance, or convulsions.
  • Antibiotics are effective in treating listeriosis in pregnant women and may help prevent transmission to the baby.
  • Listeria may rarely be found in raw hot dogs, luncheon meats, meat spreads, refrigerated smoked seafood (lox, jerky) and imported soft cheeses like feta, brie, Camembert, blue cheese, and Mexican queso. These cheeses and meat spreads should be avoided during pregnancy.
  • Listeria may be found in any unpasteurized dairy product. Pasteurized dairy products are safe to eat during pregnancy if approved by your physician.
  • There is no evidence that Listeria can be transmitted through breast milk, but contact your pediatrician if you are breastfeeding and are diagnosed with listeriosis.

For further information, please visit the CDC's listeriosis website

How Can We Help You Today?

Need help? We will be delighted to assist you today, so please call us at 404-778-7777. We look forward to hearing from you.