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Teenage Pregnancy

Definition: Teenage pregnancy is defined as pregnancy occurring in a girl below the age of 19.


Incidence: Teenage pregnancy accounts for about 10-12% of all births.


Complications Maternal


In general, maternal mortality and morbidity are more among teenage pregnancies especially in the below 15 group and the unwed mothers because there is lack of antenatal care and a tendency to conceal the pregnancy in many cases.

  1. Criminal and septic abortions are more in these girls in spite of abortion being liberalized in India.
  2. Antepartum complications like anaemia, malnutrition and pre- eclampsia are also much more in teenage pregnancy.
  3. Obstetric complications are also increased like, preterm labour, fetal prematurity and IUGR. Cephalopelvic disproportion may be a problem in the very young teenagers, as they may not have attained complete skeletal maturity. Therefore, the incidence of caesarean section may be more in this group. Other labour complications are also increased if they present for the first time in labour, without proper antenatal care.

Long-Term consequences

  1. Physical. Induced abortions may increase the risk of recurrent miscarriage, preterm labour and low birth weight babies in the subsequent pregnancy. There is also a higher chance of infertility later on due to infection and blocked tubes.
  2. Early age of onset of sexual intercourse and first pregnancy increases the risk of cancer cervix and preinvasive lesions of the cervix. There is also an increased chance of sexually transmitted diseases in unmarried mothers.
  3. Psychological, Social and educational problems - High suicide rates and depressive illness are common. Guilt feelings about a previous abortion or having given the baby for adoption, may occur, sometimes even years later. The girl may have to face social ostracism which would definitely affect her life.
  4. Problems of child - These mothers our not emotionally equipped to handle the responsibilities of motherhood.
Hence there is poor maternal- child relationship, baby battering & behavioural disturbances in children of such mothers.

Vaccines in pregnancy:

  1. Killed vaccine are safe in pregnancy.
  2. Live vaccines are best avoided in pregnancy


Only in epidemics

To be given in case of travel to highly endemic area or exposed to contacts


H-Hepatitis A/B




(mnemonic-HIT Rabies)




M-Meningococcus (Tab PCM)

Yellow fever

Japenese encephalitis

Polio (IPV)






Small pox

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