/ preɡnənsi /
Množina reči pregnancy je pregnancies.
gestation · maternity
In humans, the period during which an embryo grows within the womb. It begins at conception and ends at birth, and the normal length is 40 weeks. Menstruation usually stops on conception. About one in five pregnancies fails, but most of these failures occur very early on, so the woman may notice only that her period is late. After the second month, the breasts become tense and tender, and the areas round the nipples become darker. Enlargement of the uterus can be felt at about the end of the third month, and thereafter the abdomen enlarges progressively. Foetal movement can be felt at about 18 weeks; a heartbeat may be heard during the sixth month. Pregnancy in animals is called gestation.
Occasionally the fertilized egg implants not in the womb but in the Fallopian tube (the tube between the ovary and the uterus), leading to an ectopic (“out of place”) pregnancy. This will cause the woman severe abdominal pain and vaginal bleeding. If the growing fetus ruptures the tube, life-threatening shock may ensue. Toxemia is characterized by rising blood pressure, and if left untreated, can result in convulsions leading to coma.
Worldwide in 1994, one woman died every minute from pregnancy-related causes, the incidence varying from one in 20,000 pregnant women in Scandinavia to one in 20 in sub-Saharan Africa.