View Full Version : Athlete didn't realize she was pregnant, gives birth while training

16th December 2009, 12:42 AM
Chile weightlifter has unexpected baby during training (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/8414375.stm)

Even though the baby was born prematurely, how is it even possible for a woman not to realize she is pregnant so late in a pregnancy?

16th December 2009, 12:51 AM
You'd think several missed periods would be a clue.

Professor Yaffle
16th December 2009, 01:12 AM
A friend of mine had a hidden pregnancy and had no idea whatsoever, until she went into labour - and she went to about full term. And it was her third kid, so it's not like she doesn't know the signs. She was under a lot of stress looking after her mother who was very ill and put the absent periods down to stress/possible beginning of early menopause. I saw her a month or so before she gave birth, and she just looked like she had put on a bit of weight; she really didn't look pregnant at all.

In most cases, there is some element of psychological denial going on. Maybe in my friend's case she had so much stress going on that she couldnt cope with the thought of another child in the circumstances, and denial kicked in with her rationalising away the signs.

16th December 2009, 01:19 AM
You'd think several missed periods would be a clue.

I believe it's quite common for female athletes to miss periods when they are training heavily. I think it may be related to levels of body fat.

Professor Yaffle
16th December 2009, 01:26 AM
This paper quotes the rate of denied pregnancies at 1 in 475 births.


ETA: Also there is a popular myth that this is a phenomenon mainly occuring in very young (teenage) mothers, who are pregnant for the first time. This paper shows that there are no such useful clearcut risk factors in predicting denied pregnancies:


Here's a case study:


And an article about different types of denial: