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What's a "calcified" placenta? - Page 2

post #21 of 34
About 5-6 years previously and unfortunately during my first pregnancy, I was a smoker. ( No flaming. I've since quit entirely and I really don't need to be lectured. ) Being a smoker I can attest that the placenta does get calcium deposits. I saw them with my own eyes and the placenta looked, well like a smoker's lung. I delivered at almost 40 weeks gestation on the dot, but my placenta looked old and worn out. I was not a heavy smoker either, on average i would smoke 4-5 a day. But the point I'm trying to make is that any amount of toxins can affect the placenta. My own experience made me think about how things in our everyday world, like pollution from cars, trucks, factories, you name it, could affect the placenta. So even if you are not a smoker, perhaps if you live in a high pollution area or for whatever reason are exposed to more toxins than normal, that could have caused your placenta to develop those deposits. I am so glad that I quit smoking. Seeing my placenta for that first time and having my initial thought be "Oh my God it looks like a smoker's lung" was a huge awakening for me. I am 34 weeks with #2 and I am looking forward to seeing what a healthy placenta looks like!
post #22 of 34
While pregnant with my twins I was told at 34w that my placenta was getting old and calcified, based on an u/s finding. The Ob told me it was just the "stress" of having twins (who had Twin-to-Twin Transfusion Syndrome) and blah blah blah... I didn't ever take those acid-blocker pills, didn't smoke, didn't do anything. I was even on bedrest for 16 weeks. Anyway I was induced with cervidil and gave birth (vaginally) to two wonderful babies and the healthiest reddest most beautiful placenta you've ever seen. I even took a picture of it which I then put in my purse along with the pics of my kids and forced on unknowing bystanders for about the next year. Heeee.
post #23 of 34


I am a new member to this site. I googled calified placenta and diet to try to find out more information about placenta calcification. I am hoping some readers may have knowledge and information that can help me.

I have two healthy girls. My first pregnancy went very smoothly. My second, full of unanswered questions and concerns. I was going to be 35 years old when my second daughter was born so I opted for the early maternal serum testing. My HCG levels were 7 times higher than normal. A 12 week ultrasound found my baby with a thick (although still within normal limits) neucal translucency. That put me at much higher risk for chromosomal abnormalities. We had amino and everything was determined to be normal. But they followed closely b/c they were concerned about major organs. Then my placenta was determined to be highly calcified and I went weekly for pregnancy planning score to ensure that my baby was getting her needed nutrients. I went full term. My baby was 7 lbs 11.5 ozs at birth (heavier than my first). We never did get answers to all of my questions surrounding my risk. I recently discussed wanting to have another baby with my doctor who saw no reason why not but sent me for counseling with specialists to ensure that I was aware of potential risks and so that I could be followed closely. I had an early miss (was 5 days late for period but know I was pregnant though home pregnancy tests). I have recently miscarried my baby in another pregnancy. He/she was measuring at 10 weeks when we discovered in the 12 week ultrasound that he/she did not have a heartbeat. Obviously, we were devastated.

My question, I guess, is: Is it likely that these things are connected? I have great blood pressure. I smoke occasionally when I have a few beer (obviously never when I am pregnant and I am never pregnant and don't know it. All of my pregnancies were planned).

Is there some kind of diet or other measures I can take to ensure that I will be increasing my chances of having a successful pregnancy? I am taking 4 mgs of folic acid daily.
post #24 of 34
My research over the years has lead me to know that a calcified placenta is an old placenta and is a risk of a long pregnancy and late labor. The placenta does not function well when it is old and begins to deteriorate. The calcification occurs on the placenta and the baby can die and become calcified.

I am sure nearly everyone has heard stories about old women and calcified fetuses being passed in the old days because of a missed labor. I have.
post #25 of 34
post #26 of 34

i had ds a couple of days before 40 weeks and had a slightly calcified placenta. i also was popping tums all thru my 3rd trimester for horrible heartburn. i tried taking as little as possible but the pain was sooo bad. and i got it no matter what i did or didn't eat. even water and toast gave me heartburn.

i didn't find out about papaya until after my pregnancy .. and this is the first i've heard of using apple cider vinegar. definitely good to know for next time.
post #27 of 34
why placentas become calcified is unknown- a fairly recent study I read they did a comparison between smokers and nonsmokers at different points in pregnancy in both groups at 30 weeks between 30-45% of the pregnant women had calcified placentas by 40 weeks +/-2 days about 50% of the placentas were calcified so calcification is a average finding and can occur through out pregnancy-- to me how deeply divided and how thin a placenta becomes would be a more accurate sign of when the placenta is not functioning well.

as for diet-- eat more greens eat lots of greens -- vitamin K along with magnesium prevents soft tissue calcification -- the studies show that most women of childbearing age do not get the RDA of vitamin K from their diet .....
post #28 of 34
from the minimal research i have done, minor calcification is a normal part of pregnancy and placenta function, and should in no way be a cause for concern, and especially not a reason for c-sec.
the induction is almost 100% guaranteed to be the reason for the decels, especially if you had AROM along with your pit.
prolonged, extra strong contractions without the cushion of amniotic fluid causes compression of the umbilical cord or placenta and therefore causes a decelerated heart beat.
a baby who would normally be able to tolerate natural labor well, can have major complications when abnormally strong contractions are induced.

i wouldnt worry about the calcification, forget about that.
worry about finding a doctor who is not only pro VBAC, but anti induction and anti c-sec. as your risks go up substantially with induction and a uterine scar.

good luck!
post #29 of 34
I have loved this highly informed conversation! And will now chime in with what little I know.
Ginger tea and mint tea are great for morning sickness , and I KNOW the mint is very calming for heartburn, I have hearg ginger is as well. And just because you had morning sickness with one, don't assume you will again. Good Luck TTC!(and w/ everything else too!)
post #30 of 34

Aging Placenta

I'm new too this forum but found it looking for information on aging placentas. I am a high risk pregnancy due to Graves disease (a hyperthyroid condition) and have had my last three ultrasounds to watch the baby's growth since he is "smaller" than normal. At my last ultrasound my doctor made comments that my placenta was "aging" and that it looked "old" and I have to continue NST appointment checking on the baby. I'm currently at 33 weeks and he is only at 3 1/2 pounds and I have fear that the baby is not growing due to my aging placenta (calcified placenta). I got quite a bit of good information on this forum but wondering if anyone else can help me ways to help my placenta or stop the aging of it as quickly. I do not smoke, have never in my life, and I have taken a few tums but not any in the last 2 months. Are there are changes I can make to help improve the condition of my placenta to hopefully help get the baby the necessary nutrients for him to grow properly?
post #31 of 34
Hi Liza and LovinGreen and welcome. You should start your own threads asking your questions. Many people here do not have time to read all of the responses and just come to post a quick answer. If you put your questions in your own thread, more people will read and respond.
post #32 of 34
I didn't get a chance to read all the previous posts in this thread, so please excuse if this is redundant...

a calcified placenta indicates that the placenta is getting old, and is not doing its job well anymore. The additional indicator of low amniotic fluid corroborates this. If your placenta isn't working well anymore it isn't getting as much blood to your baby. This causes the baby to pee less, and hence, less amniotic fluid. You can physically feel the calcium crystals in the placenta after the birth - it feels "crunchy". My daughter was born 9 days past her EDD and they were going to induce because of low fluids (but didn't have to - I was already in early labor) - after the birth our family practice doc talked about calcification of the placenta and actually handed my husband a pair of gloves so that he could feel the calcium crystals in the placenta (mine was in ok shape - just starting to calcify).

You don't mention whether your baby was born long after your EDD, but this is the main reason that happens. Not much you can do about it I don't think.
post #33 of 34
I ate Tums like they were going out of style during the end of my pregnancy, but my placenta was extremely healthy. Not so much as a spot of calcification. I also delivered the day after I was "due". So I don't think Tums has anything to do with calcification.
post #34 of 34
Tums® is calcium carbonate, chalk, and cannot be absorbed by the body as a calcium supplement. I do not understand why doctors give it as a calcium supplement. It may help your dyspepsia, but it does not help your bones.

Your body needs calcium in a balance with magnesium, phosphorus and vitamin D and protein and some fat should be in the mix.
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