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Renowned Obstetrician Urges Limiting Pregnancies to Reduce Maternal Mortality



In a bid to address the high rate of maternal mortality in Nigeria, Professor Oladipo Ladipo, a distinguished Obstetrician and Gynaecologist with over 40 years of experience, has advised women to limit their pregnancies to three or four children. The Co-founder of the Association for Reproductive and Family Health highlighted the increased risk of complications and death associated with fifth and sixth pregnancies.

Ladipo, renowned for his expertise in healthcare delivery and development work, emphasized the importance of spacing pregnancies between two and a half to three years. He warned against pregnancies before the age of 18 and those above the age of 35, citing significant complications, especially hypertension.

According to Mayo Clinic, high-risk pregnancies can result from pre-existing medical conditions or conditions that develop during pregnancy, requiring special monitoring and care. Professor Ladipo stressed the need for proper spacing of pregnancies, advocating for awareness about the risk factors associated with high-risk pregnancies.

The Society of Gynaecology and Obstetrics of Nigeria (SOGON) had previously expressed concern about the high rate of maternal deaths in the country, highlighting Nigeria’s challenge in achieving Sustainable Development Goal targets. SOGON cited the maternal mortality rate at an estimated 512 deaths per 100,000 live births, far from the global target.

Professor Ladipo called for the abolition of child marriage, encouraging girls to pursue education to delay the start of reproduction. He urged both men and women to be content with having three or a maximum of four children, irrespective of gender, emphasizing that every child is a gift and has the potential to contribute to the nation’s development.

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Highlighting the discriminatory preference between female and male children, Ladipo emphasized the importance of valuing each child and warned against the health risks associated with excessive pregnancies. He concluded that contentment with a limited number of children would contribute to reducing maternal mortality in Nigeria.

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