Is simply having an increased maternal age the only reason behind older women having higher risk pregnancies?

A recent article published in the British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology strives to answer this question. Thanks to the development of assisted reproductive techniques (ART) and a change in culture, women are now having children later and later. In fact, the average maternal age at delivery has increased from 26.4yrs in 1975 to 30yrs in 2013 and is still on the rise.

Masters Training in Reproductive Medicine & IVF

The national population based study in question looked at ladies that were at least 20 weeks pregnant who were all categorised as being of advanced maternal age; that is, having an age at delivery of 48 years or more. The study found 233 women willing to participate with ages ranging from 48 – 61 years, with a median age of 49. A control group of women with a mean age of 31 years was also used so that results could be compared against younger women to see which variables were contributing to put these older women into the high risk category.

The article suggests that it is not actually the age of the women in question that forces them into the high risk category, but the increase in complications that is associated with conceiving later in life. For example, 44% of women in the increased maternal age group had pre-existing medical conditions, compared with just 28% in the comparison group. However, the biggest influencing factor when talking about pregnancy risk has to be the use of assisted reproductive techniques. 78% of the women in the older age group had used some form of assisted reproduction, which is astonishingly high compared to the 4% of women in the younger age group that needed help conceiving. The impact of this meant that in the older age group, 18% of the women were carrying a multiples pregnancy, compared to only 2% in the control group, a factor that instantly increases the risk of any pregnancy.

Therefore, perhaps it is not maternal age itself that is to blame for the increased pregnancy risk but the fact that infertility correlates with increasing maternal age, leading to increased use of ART which causes more multiple pregnancies. Consequently, being able to give women confident and comprehensive advice about assisted reproduction techniques is paramount and although ART are an amazing and exciting development in fertility medicine, they have to be used both carefully and knowledgeably. What do you think?

Link to article;

Want more info on ART? Have a look at our IVF course;


Pregnancy at a very advanced maternal stage: a UK population-based cohort study. Fitzpatrick KE, Tuffnell D, Kurinczuk JJ, Knight M. BJOG Sept. 2016.

DOI: 10.1111/1471-0528


Urogynaecology; women shouldn’t have to ‘learn to live with it.’

Understanding pelvic floor and bladder dysfunction in women is a key concept in gynaecology and forms the fundamentals of the urogynaecology specialty.  Its importance as a sub-specialty is widely regarded and providing the best treatments and techniques can greatly improve a Women’s quality of life. Issues such as stress incontinence are extremely common after child birth and there is no need for patients to suffer in silence. With the right training, you could have the skills to help this growing number of women.

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IBC Medical Services is happy to present a Masters Certificate in Urogynaecology with parts 1 and 2 running from the 13-14th and the 15th-16th of October respectively. We have also been able to secure training for the 3rd part of the course at NHS trusts in Lancashire, Southampton and Southport in the UK.  This valuable time in England will provide a full week of clinical observership, with the opportunity to sit in specialist clinics and see experts in action with patients. CME hours are also available for your own development, with 14 hours for part 1 and 13 hours for part 2.

A wide variety of aspects will be covered in the course including uroflowmetry, stress and urge incontinence treatment, complex case presentations and the principles of surgery for apical prolapse. The experienced British faculty will then guide you through some hands-on practical demonstrations and surgical techniques to help further develop your knowledge in urogynaecology. What better way to improve both your skills and your patient’s quality of life than to have practical teaching from experts in the field?

Further information and registration details can be found at the link below;

Don’t regret missing out!

Become a Master of Fetal Medicine with IBC Medical Services’ Masters Course!

Fetal Medicine is an exciting field that is rapidly expanding given the introduction of new technologies and techniques. The importance of being able to identify and manage high risk pregnancies is paramount and developing your knowledge in fetal medicine has become a necessity. Dating scans, fetal anomaly assessment and umbilical artery Doppler are all considered essential skills in the field and IBC Medical Services has recognised the need for high quality training to improve the techniques of the doctors it trains.

From the 29 th -30 th of September and the 1 st October 2016, IBC Medical Services is proud to be running modules 1 and 2 of the masters training in fetal medicine program. There will be comprehensive teaching on ultrasound in fetal medicine, with a systems based approach to fetal anomalies and discussion on topics such as multiples pregnancy and non-invasive prenatal diagnosis. As always, IBC Medical Services invites highly qualified speakers to teach on our courses and this course is no exception! Experienced British consultants will be sharing their expertise and leading practical sessions with both real patients and simulators.

IBC Medical Services is the only medical trainer in the UAE offering simulation training with ultrasound devices that give real time images, guided tutorials and allow you to work through simulated cases. You could have the opportunity to visualise the fetal heart yourself and perform tasks such as crown rump length and abdominal circumference. Previous delegates have testified that this state-of- the-art software, coupled with real patients and excellent teaching are what really makes this course a success.

For more information and to register for this opportunity please follow the link below;

Too good to be true? Join our course program and see for yourself.!

We’ll see you in the scan room!

Develop your surgical skills with IBC Medical Services Laparoscopy Course!

Do you want to improve your laparoscopic surgery skills? Would you like hands on practical sessions, using state of the art equipment? Do you want to be able to prove the best standard of surgical treatment for your patients?

Laparoscopy course

IBC is excited to present our upcoming Laparoscopy training course on the 22nd to 26th September 2016 in Dubai!

Our highly skilled visiting surgeons, who have many years of experience in the field, will be guiding delegates through the course and sharing their skills. They will take delegates from exercises to improve hand eye coordination through to dissection techniques and intra-corporal suturing to ensure water-tight anastomoses. This will also be the perfect opportunity for delegates to ask specific questions about their own laparoscopic technique and gain specialist advice.

One of the highlights of this course is the opportunity to practice new found skills using our state of the art laparoscopy simulation, a facility unique in the UAE to IBC. Delegates will be able to get one-to- one feedback from specialists in the field and gain valuable experience!

Completing this course will provide delegates with not only 27.5 CME accredited hours and a course certificate but the essential surgical techniques necessary to develop your laparoscopic technique to improve your surgical practice.

Find out more today and book now to confirm your place at:

We hope to see you there!