Female Fertility after Spinal Cord Injury

Female Fertility after Spinal Cord Injury

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I always want to tell people that the likelihood
of getting pregnant is the same as it was before your injury. So obviously, if a women
has had a hysterectomy, or if thereís some other reason she couldnít get pregnant before
her injury, her injury does not change that. But they can still get pregnant, just as easily
as they did before, so if you need to practice safe sex, do that. When a woman does get pregnant,
then you definitely want to be to the OB-GYN early, because many OB-GYNs, just because
itís a lack of experience with women with disabilities, whether itís a spinal cord
injury or some disability, sometimes theyíre going to consider you more high riskójust
because of the disability and their lack of knowledge of that. If you can find an OB-GYN
thatís used to women with spinal cord injury, thatís a wonderful thing. Sometimes it takes
the OB-GYN who specializes in the pregnancy, and a spinal cord injury provider who specializes
in spinal cord injury, and the two of them working together, and that happens a lot.
The thing to remember is that the woman with the disability knows her body as well as anybody
else, so the OB-GYNs a lot of the time really listen to her. Once she gets pregnant, she
can carry the baby to normal term; thatís not an issue. The issues of pregnancy are,
statistics show that women with spinal cord injury do have a tendency towards small birth
weight, at the birth of the baby. So the baby tends to be a little bit smaller. Iím not
saying itís going to be, Iím saying the risk of that is higher. Also the risk of c-section
is higher. In the general population is about 30 percent, so itís going to be a little
bit higher in a person with a spinal cord injury. Is that due to spinal cord injury?óOr
is that due to provider-comfort?ówe donít know. But I know people with paraplegia, and
I know people with tetraplegia who have normal vaginal deliveries. I also know people with
paraplegia and with tetraplegia whoíve had c-sections. And the things that they need
to be aware of are that theyíre going to have the same risks in going through pregnancy
that a woman without a spinal cord injury hasóthe risk of anemia, the risk of more
frequent urinary tract infections. The things that are going to be a little unique to their
spinal cord injury is the fact that they may get urinary tract infections easier or more
often because they do, due to their catheter, anyway. Subtitles by the Amara.org community

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