Pregnancy is a life-changing experience filled with joy and wonder, but it is also one that can fill a mother-to-be with fear and anxiety. While most pregnancies progress without much incident, about eight percent of all pregnancies involve some kind of complications. These complications may be caused by genetic disposition or lifestyle factors, or they may seemingly happen without reason.

Even though some of these conditions may occur unexpectedly and may be unavoidable, it is important for pregnant women to know the signs to look out for. From severe vomiting to a sudden onset of high blood pressure, here are the top abnormal pregnancy conditions you should be aware of.

Hyperemesis Gravidarum

Morning sickness affects up to 80% of pregnant women all around the world. While this is normal, severe morning sickness can be quite dangerous. Hyperemesis Gravidarum (HG) is a debilitating condition that causes uncontrolled vomiting far beyond the usual morning sickness. It can result in severe weight loss, nutrient deficit, dehydration, and impact day-to-day activities.

The biggest signs of HG are severe nausea and vomiting. Many women suffering from this abnormal condition also reported a weight loss of 5 percent or more as compared to their weight before pregnancy

Gestational Diabetes

Most of us know that chronic diabetes can be caused by lifestyle and genetic factors, but did you know that it can also surface during pregnancy? Gestational diabetes mellitus (GD) presents the same way as normal diabetes – it prevents the body from breaking down sugar. Babies born to mothers with GD may grow larger than normal, and their shoulders may get stuck during natural delivery. 

GD cannot be detected simply through a physical examination. Obstetricians in Singapore will usually screen expectant mothers for it during the second trimester, or earlier for high-risk individuals. While GD can be controlled by diet or even insulin medications, prevention is better than cure. If you are trying to conceive, the best way to keep GD at bay is to maintain a healthy weight, stick to a nutritious diet and ensure regular exercise. 

Placenta Previa

The placenta provides your baby with nutrients and oxygen for proper development. Therefore, things can get tricky if problems with the placenta arise. With placenta previa, this structure grows to cover the cervix – either totally or partially – instead of on the upper part of the uterus. This may result in abnormal bleeding during pregnancy, which can result in large volumes of blood loss in the mother very quickly. 

The chances of placenta previa is higher for women who have scarring on the uterus from previous pregnancies or a uterine surgery, or if they have uterus fibroids. Even though this condition cannot be prevented, getting regular prenatal care helps your doctor detect symptoms earlier.


Preeclampsia (PE) causes high blood pressure in pregnant women which, if left untreated, can be potentially fatal. It typically happens after 20 weeks of pregnancy, and is more common in women who never had high blood pressure in the past. Symptoms of preeclampsia may include severe headaches, vision changes, or pain under the ribs. Even though many women do not detect the symptoms right away, the good news is that it can be detected early during a routine visit at the obstetrics clinic.

PE currently affects about 3.6% of the population in Singapore, and its risk factors include having a history of high blood pressure, being obese, maternal age, and pregnancy with multiples.

Get Regular Prenatal CheckUps

The pregnancy process is one filled with many surprises, and nobody wants to be caught unprepared. Even though these abnormal pregnancy conditions can seem scary, they can be detected early with regular prenatal checkups. 

At The O&G Specialist Clinic, we provide modern obstetrics and gynaecology services such as routine checks, fetal and maternal screening, and more. Our fertility doctors in Singapore are experienced in spotting issues in incubation and providing the right care and support you need to navigate this complex journey without worry – from the moment you discover your pregnancy to after your delivery. Book a virtual consultation to speak to us today.

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